The rules about bringing Tide Pods on a plane seem confusing because everybody has their own opinion on this matter.
The TSA states that they treat laundry detergent pods as liquid detergent, meaning that the 3-1-1 rule applies.
As a rule, with a few restrictions, you can bring laundry detergent pods onto a plane in either your carry-on or checked luggage.
You can pack as many Tide Pods as you want inside your checked luggage because there is no 100ml rule, but if you pack them in your carry-on, you are limited to the amount that will fit in a quart-size bag.
If you have other toiletries in this bag, you will be further limited in the number of Tide Pods you can pack.
You can find out more about the 3-1-1 TSA liquids rule in this video:
How many Tide Pods can you bring with you in a carry-on?
The answer depends on how you pack them and if you have other toiletries in your quart-size bag.
For example, I can pack about nine laundry pods inside a small plastic box and then place that box inside a quart-size bag.
I would probably be able to pack more if I only packed the Tide Pods in the bag, but I feel like choosing to squeeze them together might not be the best approach.
When you travel for a few days, you don’t need to bring many Tide Pods because one or one will be enough to wash your clothes.
However, if you plan to travel for a few weeks, I recommend using your quart-size bag for other necessary toiletries since Tide Pods are available worldwide.
Can you bring more Tide Pods inside a carry-on?
You can’t take more than what will fit in a quart-size bag since each person is limited to only one bag, but there are other solutions.
If you travel with a group and really can’t live without your Tide Pods, you may ask your groupmates to pack a few in their quart-size bags if they have extra space.
Alternatively, instead of bringing Tide Pods, you can pack some washing powder in your carry-on because there are no restrictions.
You can bring as much washing powder as you can carry, although you’ll need to remove it from your carry-on and place it in a separate bin during security screening if you have an excessive amount.
The container where the powder is stored should be easily accessible because TSA agents will open it for close inspection.
Will Tide Pods leak or explode on an airplane?
I am happy to tell you that Tide Pods will not leak or explode if packed properly.
This is because the airplane’s cabin pressure is not high enough to cause a problem.
Travelers usually pack laundry detergent pods in two or three bags because they fear a leak, but this is not likely to happen.
If you have Tide Pods in your checked luggage, remember that the cargo area of a commercial airplane is also pressurized.
Related: Can you bring a hydro flask on a plane?
Tide Pods will also not freeze, as the temperature inside the cargo area is just a few degrees lower than in the passenger area.
Even if the temperature drops during the flight, it will never reach 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you are still not convinced that Tide Pods will not leak on the plane, remember that isolated places around the globe, like Antarctica, get their supplies delivered by airplane, and Tide Pods make their way there without any problem.
If you accidentally spilled water on the Tide Pods, don’t bring them with you because water dissolves the gel membrane of the pods and they will leak inside the airplane.
The only problem is that if you don’t pack them properly, the detergent pods may get squeezed by other belongings inside the luggage, which may make you think that the pods have exploded.
Tide Pods in checked luggage
I already mentioned that there are no restrictions in quantity when you bring Tide Pods in your checked bag, but I want to stress the importance of packing them in a plastic container that is hermetically sealed.
I use a plastic container that was initially created to store protein powder. It’s lightweight and sturdy, and water cannot reach the Tide Pods when they are in the container.
Even if my checked luggage gets thrown around during transit, I am confident that no pods will leak, and even if they do, the liquid will not reach other belongings.
Why do some Tide Pods leak inside the airplane?
Tide Pods have one enemy, and that its water. After all, they are designed to dissolve when placed in water.
Tide recommends keeping the laundry pods inside a closed container because the outer film will begin to dissolve if you live in an area with high humidity.
It’s best to pack Tide Pods from a brand-new container to prevent them from leaking inside an airplane.
When you pack laundry detergent pods for airplane travel, ensure that the plastic container where they will be stored has no residual water inside and can be hermetically sealed.
A few drops of water coupled with the airplane’s inside pressure will make the pods burst.
When that happens, the liquid from one pod will reach the others and dissolve the outer protective film, creating a chain reaction that will ruin all of your Tide Pods.
There is a sure way to know if the Tide Pods were affected by humidity.
If the pods are sticky, it indicates that the outer gel membrane is partially dissolved, and the pods might leak inside a plane.
So don’t bring sticky Tide Pods packed in your carry-on or checked luggage because the chances of bursting are very high.