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Can you knit on a plane?

James McIntosh
June 17, 2019

Can you knit on a plane?

Yes, I'm sure you can, and indeed I have many times.

14 hours on a flight from London to Hong Kong on many occasions has produced a sleeve or 2 for me, a hat or a good start at a scarf. All that available time to knit while watching a movie is good knitting time.

However I have heard horror stores about people having their knitting ripped off their needles in one swish of a security guard's hands! The indignity of it.

Security for stitches

When preparing for airport security, I recommend sewing in a safety line. That way, if needles are confiscated, stitches remain.

My experience

I'm a frequent traveller and the following airlines and airports have been successful for me to bring my knitting in my hand baggage. Scissors never in the cabin! I have had straight needles, wooden, carbon, plastic, bamboo and mental too. DPN's and circulars as well. I don't hide them, they are just in my hand baggage.


  • UK - London Heathrow, London Gatwick, London Luton, London Stanstead, London Southend, Belfast City, Belfast International
  • Germany - Frankfurt, Munich, Dortmund, Hamburg, Berlin Schönefeld, Berlin Tegel
  • Italy - Rome Leonardo de Vinci
  • Israel - Ben Gurion
  • Holland - Groningen
  • Sweden - Västerås
  • Greece - Kefalonia
  • India - Goa
  • Denmark - Copenhagen and Rønne
  • Hong Kong
  • China - Shanghai Pudong, Shanghai Hongqiao, Beijing Capital, Yantai, Qingdao


  • British Airways
  • Lufthansa
  • Easyjet
  • Ryanair
  • Aer Lingus
  • Fly Be
  • Virgin
  • SAS
  • Thomas Cook
  • Air China
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Shandong Airlines
  • Danish Air Transport
  • China Southern
  • Dragon Air

A note of caution

Although a knitting needle arguably has the same danger level as a pencil, one must remember that it's both up to the airport and airline.

Knitting selfies on planes

Oh go on, share your knitting selfies on board... Enjoy mine in the loo.

James McIntosh taking a knitting selfie sitting on the loo on Dragon Air

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