Many people wonder if it is possible to bring a portable charger or power bank on a plane, and the short answer is yes, they are allowed in carry-on baggage.
According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), in its Dangerous Goods Regulations, the power bank is “considered” as a spare battery and is governed by the following rules:
- It must be packed in carry-on baggage.
- A maximum of 20 units may be carried without prior approval of the flight operator, provided that the total rated capacity does not exceed 100 Wh.
- A maximum of 2 units may be carried, subject to the approval of the flight operator, if the rated capacity is greater than 100 Wh but not exceeding 160 Wh.
|Powerbank Capacity||Carry-on baggage||Checked baggage||Operator approval|
|<= 100 Wh||Yes (max 20 ud)||No||No|
|>100 Wh to <= 160 Wh||Yes (max 2 ud)||No||Yes|
|> 160 Wh||Not allowed on passenger aircraft|
Although these regulations govern the airlines, you can check their documentation on dangerous goods if they include other restrictions for portable chargers:
How to check if your power bank is allowed on a plane?
Typically, the power bank specification sheet usually indicates its rated capacity in Ah and Wh but if you can not find it you can always calculate it for yourself:
A power bank consists of a set of lithium-ion batteries of a certain capacity and a common voltage of 3.7V (note that it can also be at another voltage: 3.6V, 3.8V or 3.85V!)
To know the rated capacity in Watt-hour (Wh), you must multiply the power bank’s total capacity indicated in mAh by this voltage and divide it by 1000:
Rated Capacity (Wh) = (mAh x V) / 1000
You can also use our own mAh to Wh converter below:
mAh to Wh converter
To understand it better, let’s see some examples to know if we can bring a portable charger of different capacities on a plane:
Power banks for air travel
Here are some ideal power bank options that you can take with you on air travel: