Information for Passengers who are travelling with batteries that are not installed in devices
The following information is taken from the current edition of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air.
Passengers must contact their airline in advance to gain approval when planning to travel with certain types of dangerous goods as indicated below.
Restrictions implemented by other countries in the interests of aviation security may further limit or forbid the carriage of some of the items listed in these pages. Additionally, airlines and security screening agencies have the right to refuse the carriage of certain items.
The term “lithium battery” refers to a family of batteries with different chemistries, comprising of many types of cathodes and electrolytes. They are separated into:
The watt-hour (Wh) rating is a measure by which lithium ion batteries are regulated. Since 2009 and 2011 respectively, manufacturers have been required to mark lithium ion batteries with the watt-hour rating.
You can arrive at the number of watt-hours your battery provides if you know the battery's nominal voltage (V) and capacity in ampere-hours (Ah) using this calculation - Ah x V = Wh.
This information is often marked on the battery.
If only the milli-ampere hours (mAh) are marked on the battery, then divide that number by 1000 to get ampere-hours (Ah). For example, 4400 mAh / 1000 = 4.4 Ah.
Checked (hold) Baggage
On One's Person
|Airline approval required|
Each lithium ion cell or battery must be individually protected so as to prevent short circuits (by placement in original retail packaging or by otherwise insulating terminals, e.g. by taping over exposed terminals or placing each battery in a separate plastic bag or protective pouch).
No more than two individually protected spare batteries per person may be carried.
Batteries and cells must be of a type which meets the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, subsection 38.3. It may be necessary to contact the manufacturer to confirm that they have complied with this.
Refuelling of fuel cells on board an aircraft is not permitted, although the installation of a spare cartridge is allowed.
No more than two spare fuel cell cartridges may be carried by per passenger.
The airline’s approval is not required to carry spare fuel cell cartridges. However, the passenger must contact their airline prior to travel to obtain information contained within the ICAO Technical Instructions.
When carried by passengers for personal use these must be individually protected so as to prevent short circuits (by placement in original retail packaging or by otherwise insulating terminals, e.g. by taping over exposed terminals or placing each battery in a separate plastic bag or protective pouch) and carried in carry-on baggage only.
Each spare battery must not exceed the following:
Batteries and cells must be of a type which meets the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, subsection 38.3. It may be necessary to contact the manufacturer to confirm that this has been complied with.
Batteries can be considered as non-spillable provided that they are capable of withstanding the vibration and pressure differential tests given below, without leakage of battery fluid.
Pressure differential test: The passenger must contact the airline for further guidance.
Non-spillable type batteries which are an integral part of, and necessary for the operation of, mechanical or electronic equipment must be securely fastened in the battery holder on the equipment and protected in such a manner so as to prevent damage and short circuit.
It is required that at a temperature of 55°C, the electrolyte will not flow from a ruptured or cracked case. The battery must not contain any free or unabsorbed liquid. Equipment having the potential of dangerous evolution of heat must be prepared for transport so as to prevent: