Most knife enthusiasts never leave home without a knife in your possession. While our knives are important to us, we need to be cautious of our knives when we travel. It’s a bit of a tricky subject, however. There is no way to absolutely guarantee the legality of carrying your tool during travel due to the complexity of laws between states and cities.
It is pertinent to check the laws and ordinances in any and all of states and cities that will be passed through when you travel. Federal laws should be regarded as well. This means that when you enter a federal facility, you accept the regulations of said federal building (i.e. post office, military base, courts). When these laws are not followed, severe consequences will ensue. Extra punishments are also generally carried out if you were to carry a knife while committing a federal crime.
There are five primary forms of knife restrictions- keeping in mind that some knives may be legal to own, but not carry. The five primary regulations are blade deployment (how the blade is deployed such as an out-the-front knife), blade length, lock mechanism, concealed carry, and per se limitations (banning of specific knives such as daggers).
Air travel is restricted not only by the federal government, but by individual airlines as well. When you pass through security and when you place you bags through the luggage scan, you are consenting to both a personal search as well as a luggage search. Knives are not allowed in carry on luggage, but are allowed if you check your bags. When packing a checked bag with knives, consider using a sheath, knife roll, or case for added protection. It is also suggested that a TSA lock be used as well as requesting a search in your presence just as a precaution.
Rail travel is arguably the most restrictive form of travel when it comes to the banning of knives. Different rail travel companies have different policies, so be sure to check with the company before carrying onto their platforms.
No matter how you choose to travel, we highly recommend doing your research prior to. The bottom line is be aware of the laws that you are subjecting yourself to when carrying. Always plan ahead.
For more information on knife laws, be sure to read here: