Can You Bring a Microwave On a Plane In Your Carry On Luggage?

Microwaves makes cooking and reheating food easier and more convenient anytime and anywhere, but can you bring a microwave on a plane?.

The answer is yes! you are allowed to take microwaves with you when you fly on a plane, but there are some few rules to keep in mind.

In this post, I will be looking at the TSA rules for traveling with microwaves in both carry-on and checked baggage, and some tips on how to make the most of your microwave experience.


  • Microwaves are allowed through both the TSA and international security checkpoints.
  • You can bring a microwave, an oven and even an air fryer in both carry-on and checked baggage.
  • Ensure that your microwaves is within your airline size and weight requirements.
  • Use a good and sturdy bag to protect your microwave from any scratches and damage.

Can you bring a microwave through TSA?

According to U.S. Energy Information Administration In 2015, 96% of U.S households reported having a microwave oven.

So, it is necessary that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) include information about traveling with microwaves on their website.

here is a screenshot from the TSA website:

Screenshot from TSA website
Screenshot from the TSA website

The answer is clear and straightforward.

You can bring microwaves on a plane in your carry-on bag or in your checked bag.

Here is the AskTSA customer service confirming it on X.

Answer from TSA on taking microwave on a plane
Screenshot from X

However, ensure that your microwave is within your airline carry-on size limits.

You should also be ready for the security officers to ask you to open the package or put your microwave in a different bin for extra screening.

The TSA always reminds us that the final decision whether an item will be allowed or not, rest with the security officer inspecting your bags at the airport.

What About Other Microwave Gadgets?

If you are taking any sharp items or tools along with your microwave in a commercial flight it is better to know what tools are allowed through the security checkpoint.

For example all types of knives must to be packed in checked baggage, unless it is a plastic or rounded butter knife.

Spoons, tongs and forks are good to go through the security checkpoint without any issues.

Microwaves on Planes: Carry-On or Checked Baggage?

countertop microwave and a proratable personal microwave

Small microwaves like the portable personal microwave in the image are easy to travel with because of their small dimensions (10.23″D x 7.48″W x 5.11″H).

But in case it doesn’t fit inside your bag, it will be counted as a valid carry-on so you might need to sacrifice one of your carry-on items.

If you’re flying basic economy, keep in mind that most airlines only allow one personal item. So you will find it hard to bring a microwave as carry-on even if it is a small one.

Countertop microwaves like in the image ( 17.14″D x 20.51″W x 12.83″H. without packaging ) or a Magic Chef microwave will need more space in the overhead compartment as most of them above the standard size for major US airlines (22 in x 14 in x 9 in / 55 x 35 x 22 cm).

The issue here is on the height of the microwave which is 12.83 inches while some airplanes overhead bin height size is less than 11 inches.

Here is the comparison.

countertop microwave size and united airline carry-on size

This means that you will have to pack your large microwave in checked baggage.

Most domestic airlines have a generous carry-on weight allowance, but remember that they advise to be able to place the bag in the overhead bin without seeking help from the flight attendants or other fellow passengers.

Keep your expensive microwave and any valuable appliances at home and never send them in the airplane hold. Checked baggage isn’t always handled carefully, and there’s a risk it could even go missing.

Traveler pro tips

Take a Microwave On International Flights

Microwaves are also okay to bring on internationally as long as they meat the airline and the airport guidelines.

Within the airline size, weight limits and do not contain any dangerous or sharp objects inside them.

But it is a good idea to reach out to your airline in advance and confirm with them that you are taking a microwave, as some of them may require special packaging or handling for large items.


Should You Pack a Microwave For a Flight?

It’s worth considering if you really need to take a microwave with you on a plane, because many hotel and accommodations already have microwaves that you can use to reheat your meal or craft a quick snack.

With only one simple phone call to the hotel reception desk you can guarantee your food is warm.

But if you really need a microwave at your destination, but you don’t want to pack your expensive one, or to bother yourself with the airline’s guidelines you can always pack up a box with all your microwave accessories and ship it to your destination

You will need to ship it back home when you are done, this would really save you some checked luggage charges and the hassle of carrying a microwave at the airports.

Can You Use a Microwave When Camping?

It is supper handy to take a microwave on a camping adventure, especially if you travel in a group or you have kids with you.

But remember, if you want to bring a microwave to a camping pitch, make sure it has a place to plug it such as an electrical hookup.

If you’re going camping on campsite with no electricity, think about using a camping stove instead.

Just ensure that your stove is clean and empty from any fuel or residue before packing it.

Final Thoughts

The TSA folks will not stop you from taking, over-the-range, countertop drawer, convection, and even built-in microwaves on planes.

But if you want to bring one with you on board, it will mainly depend on how big your microwave is, and how many carry-on items your airline does allow.

If you show up with a large microwave, just expect it to be taken on holed the airplane, and you may also have to pay some additional charges.

So before you head to the airport, measure your microwave and check your airline luggage size and weight to avoid any inconvenience at the airport.

Hope this helps

Happy travels

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