Can I Take A Dumbbell On A Plane?

So you are either in shape or getting in shape. Don’t you hate it when you are finally starting a fitness program or going to the gym then the holidays come up or traveling for vacation. I mean I love the holidays and vacation, but it makes it so much tougher to get in or stay in shape.

That is the nice thing about a lot of at home workout programs you can do them on the road or almost anywhere even while camping. But some do require equipment so how do you go about getting that equipment from your home to your point of destination.

So can you take a dumbbell with you on a plane or in you luggage?

For most situations it would not be worth it to carry on your dumbbells unless they are light 3-5 lbs. If heavier check them in and adhere to the weight limit of checked in bags. 

There are many alternatives to your standard dumbbells that you can travel much better with. This way you leave more room for things you need like clothes and shoes for the weight capacity of your check in.

These days traveling and exercising can be made pretty easy even if there is no gym at your resort or hotel.

Alternatives To Standard Weighted Dumbbells

  • Resistance Bands – this are very travel friendly and almost all dumbbell exercises you can substitute with resistance bands. You can actually do more exercises then you can with dumbbells like doing pull up modifiers.
  • Water Dumbbells – there are aqua water travel weights that you can fill with water to add weight to them. They look similar to dumbbell and ankle weights.
  • Gallon Jug For Water/Milk – although not the heaviest as a gallon of water weighs around 8 lbs but if you fill with sand or something more solid like sand it will way much more. You can add a rope to it and get many more different exercises out of it as well.
  • Paint Cans – samething as a jug can use with rope get many different exercises in.
  • Heavy Books – some college books get up there in weight so you can use them for light weighted workouts.
  • 5 Gallon Bucket – now this will add some weight on and if you use water will also work on your stabilization skills. Of course add some rope to get your triceps and biceps roaring.
  • Weighted Vest – you can get some great workouts just by adding a weighted vest and not just for running. You can also weigh down your backpack to simulate a weighted vest.

Taking Weights On A Plan Yes Or No From Actual People

Here are some answers from forums we have gathered that will help you predict what you can lift from those that have done so in the gym and at home. We gathered these from bodybuilding.com, Quora.com, Reddit.com and other fitness sites and blogs from actual users.

  1. David Lean –“Sure.
    But most airlines have a policy of a maximum of 30 kgs for each bag. This is mostly to prevent injury to their baggage handlers.
    Some regional carriers have an even lower limit, to ensure their small planes are loaded correctly.
    So you may need a lot of bags to split the weights up.

    You might be able to check it in as special cargo thru the oversize & special handling check-in. Some airport will handle it. Budget to pay a lot in excess baggage fees.”

  2.  Jeanne Skow –Yeah, Sure You can carry your dumbbell in your check in luggage.

    But one thing you need to consider to support your airline & dumbbell take much storage in your luggage. As the reason I recommend to buy Samsonite Silhouette Sphere luggage[1] for your trip.

  3. Anonymous –“It’s not a restricted item, so there shouldn’t be an issue. Just don’t be surprised if the security guys start asking you questions about them when they show up on the x-ray scan.

    I’ve heard that there are some dumbbells that you can fill with water, so they are lighter on trips. maybe look into those for convenience.”

  4. JustARogue –“Doesnt have to be per se…If they can articulate that it “could” be used as a weapon they can require you to check it. Therin lies the problem though; what the guy working the xray at the monent you go thru security determines to be a weapon.

    Im going to say no, it wont pass through security. Also: Sports equipment that can be used as a bludgeon (such as bats and clubs) is prohibited in the cabin of the plane and must be transported in your checked baggage.”

Related Questions

Hand Weights In Carry On?

As long as your hand weights aren’t over 3-5 lbs you shouldn’t have an issue however call your airline or airport to verify ahead of time.

How About Ankle Weights In Carry  On?

Ankle weights should be fine for a carry on since they don’t weigh as much as dumbbells normally. Call ahead to check your specific airline or airport to check for up to date TSA standards.

Final Thoughts

If you looking to travel with your dumbbells you may want to call ahead to your hotel or resort to just see if they have ones you can use.

If you absolutely want to bring your dumbbells on the plane then call your airline or TSA to verify you will be able to take them. The worst thing to happen would be to have them confiscated and be out your dumbbells.

Also look into our list of alternatives obviously it is based where you are on your journey. Resistance bands would be worth it for the short term especially. You may even see big gains if you have never used resistance bands before but have been using dumbbells for a long time. This is because it will work your body out a bit differently then standard dumbbells.

Another option I didn’t mention above is the X3 bar band which I haven’t used personally so I can recommended but if they have a free trial or something may be worth a shot. And it looks very portable, but basically a resistance band workout on steroids.


Tab Winner

We are fun loving family that lives on a small farm and tries to be healthy. We are not fitness fanatics we are just trying to keep things simple especially with how busy our lives are. We have a few horses, a few dogs, and a young daughter along with a big extended family. Follow us on our journey. I hope you enjoy the website. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. Please check back for updates!

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