Attention Frequent Fliers: The TSA rules regarding the batteries you can bring with you on an airplane are changing as of January 1st, 2008.
It has to do with the content of Lithium in your rechargeable batteries. Here are some of the dos and donâ€™ts being rolled out for this New Year in Air Travel.
Pack your Lithium Rechargeable Batteries in your carry on. You are prohibited from backing extra batteries in your checked luggage after January 1 2008. This applies to â€œextraâ€ batteries. That means if you donâ€™t store the power cell in the device in question, itâ€™s an â€œextra.â€
Pack extra batteries into your checked luggage to save space. This will land you in hot water. A spare battery that is installed in its device is acceptable, but don’t push it.
Follow the Lithium quantity limits that apply to both the battery in your device in question and â€œsparesâ€ you may have brought along. It doesnâ€™t matter where you store them, batteries with over 8 grams of equivalent lithium content are prohibited. This means that all newer model cell phones will be fine. Most Laptop Batteries now have less than 8 grams of equivalent lithium content as well.
Pack batteries that have more than 8 grams of equivalent lithium content. This also includes packing several batteries with more than 25 grams of lithium between them. This means you can go over the level of lithium for a single battery if itâ€™s spread out over two different power cells.
Check to see if your device uses a Lithium Metal Battery. These have different requirements and restrictions. You can only bring a lithium metal battery that has less than 2 grams of actual Lithium metal content. Almost all consumer types of Lithium metal batteries are compliant with this rule. But if you canâ€™t tell for sure, contact the manufacturer!
Check a spare Lithium Metal Battery. You can check a device with one installed. You canâ€™t have a spare in your checked baggage, 2-gram maximum compliant or not.
On the whole: If you donâ€™t have to take spare Lithium batteries with you, donâ€™t. If you do have to travel with extra power, consult the TSA website. Theyâ€™ll let you know whatâ€™s allowed and not allowed. Good Luck, and have a pleasant trip!