If you are wondering if you can board a commercial flight with a GoPro camera and its accessories, you will find everything you need to know in this article.
The TSA’s rules about bringing digital cameras on an airplane are crystal clear.
As a rule, you can bring your GoPro in either your carry-on or your checked luggage.
However, if your GoPro contains the battery, you cannot pack it in your checked luggage and must instead bring it in your carry-on.
Even if your GoPro has no battery, I recommend bringing it in your carry-on and avoiding the checked luggage.
My recommendation doesn’t have anything to do with the TSA rules. Instead, it’s my way of ensuring that the camera doesn’t meet that clumsy baggage handler we are all afraid of.
Additionally, although rare, someone might steal from your checked luggage, and digital cameras are a thief’s first choice.
This brings us to the next point: checked baggage gets lost every day, and when I reach a new location, I expect to have my camera available right away.
If you have another digital camera in addition to your GoPro, bear in mind that any electronic device larger than a smartphone needs to be removed from your carry-on and scanned prior to boarding the plane.
Can you use your GoPro inside the airport or airplane?
You can use your camera inside the airport, but remember that some areas within an airport are off-limits.
For example, filming the customs and security areas is strictly forbidden.
If you fly internationally and see the “Photography Not Allowed” sign, respect it. Each country has different rules about filming inside the airport or on planes.
Regardless of the rules in your home country, I advise you to always ask an official if you can film prior to doing so when you are in a foreign airport.
In the U.S. and Europe, you can film inside the airplane, but try not to harass everyone by recording the entire flight.
You might disturb someone, and the flight crew has the right to ask you to stop filming.
I don’t know if there is a rule prohibiting filming inside the airplanes, as vloggers and TikTokers do this every day without any obvious issues.
Still, I’m sure every airline has some policies about annoying passengers.
In conclusion, you should be fine unless you stick the camera in other people’s faces.
Can you bring GoPro batteries on a plane?
I am happy to tell you that GoPro batteries are allowed on an airplane but only in a carry-on.
GoPro batteries do not exceed the TSA limit of 100-watt hour per battery, which means that you can bring them on the plane.
Note: If you plan to take your power bank with you, make sure that it has a rating no greater than 100-watt hours.
Nowadays, most power banks are under this limit, but it’s better to check before boarding the plane.
How many GoPro batteries can you bring with you on an airplane?
I have a friend who loves making travel videos in isolated places around the globe. He regularly travels internationally with six GoPro batteries and has never had an issue.
He told me that he has traveled with as many as eight batteries.
He keeps the batteries stored separately from his other belongings and in a way that prevents the contact points from touching each other.
When he first started flying with so many batteries, he used to pack them fully depleted.
He also kept the batteries in a transparent plastic case, and every time he encountered airport security, he made sure to let them know that the batteries were drained of power.
Nowadays, nobody asks him anything about the number of batteries he brings or their level of charge.
The TSA treats lithium batteries as hazardous items, so I can confidently tell you that if you try to board the plane with 30 GoPro batteries, TSA agents will have something to say about it.
Can you bring GoPro accessories onto a commercial flight?
Yes, all GoPro accessories can be brought with you on an airplane.
The only problem you might encounter is with the GoPro “selfie stick” or the telescopic pole and tripod stand.
One of the many TSA rules is “no club-like objects.”
If you have a small aluminum stick, you should be fine, but if you have a solid pole that looks like a weapon, don’t bring it with you in your carry-on. Instead, place that stick in your checked luggage.
From what I can tell, all the selfie sticks sold by GoPro can be brought with you onto a plane.
The TSA agents don’t care about them because they see this kind of stick daily.
Issues tend to arise with the aftermarket sticks, especially those designed to accommodate heavier digital cameras.
Will the X-ray machine do damage to my GoPro or memory card?
No, the x-ray machine isn’t going to damage the camera or the memory card.
Every day, tens of thousands of electronic devices are scanned by the TSA, and there isn’t a single instance where one was damaged or data was lost because of the scanner.
Laptops and smartphones do not lose data when scanned, nor does GoPro.
Can you take GoPro batteries in checked luggage?
You are not allowed to bring rechargeable batteries in your checked luggage.
The TSA doesn’t allow this because lithium batteries can sometimes catch fire and endanger flight safety, so don’t even try to bring one in your checked bag.
Are all GoPro batteries lithium
Yes, all GoPro batteries contain lithium, but it’s a small quantity, and no TSA agent will stop you because of this.
There are currently no aftermarket batteries for GoPro that don’t contain lithium.
Do all GoPro models use the same battery?
No, not all GoPro models use the same battery. The rechargeable batteries look the same, but there are slight differences in dimensions and contact points.
For example, Hero8 and Hero9 batteries look the same to the naked eye but are not interchangeable between the two models.
If you are planning to upgrade your GoPro camera and don’t know if your batteries will be compatible with the next model, you can find everything you need to know here.
Do lithium batteries catch fire or explode on planes?
No, lithium batteries do not explode on planes.
The possibility of this has been exaggerated because the media focuses on the fact that sometimes lithium batteries do explode.
When it happens on an airplane, they have a piece of shocking news to cover by claiming that passengers were in danger.
The risk of a lithium battery bursting into flames on an airplane is no greater than it happening on the ground.
Cnet states that the risk of a lithium battery exploding is 1 in 10 million-source.
By comparison, the chances of being attacked and killed by a shark are 1 in 3.75 million.
The TSA mitigates this risk by allowing the rechargeable batteries only in carry-on luggage.
There is a common belief that an airplane’s cabin pressure can cause lithium batteries to bulge, and the risk of them catching fire is higher on a plane.
Currently, there are no studies to prove or disprove this statement.
Studies show that for a lithium battery to burst into flames, it must suffer damage that affects its structural integrity, so inspecting your battery for signs of damage might be a good way to reduce the chance of a fire.
Remember that the batteries can also have manufacturing defects.
This is why it is better to avoid purchasing cheap lithium batteries.
A defective battery could also damage your GoPro; thus, I advise you not to buy cheap GoPro batteries.