If you’ve ever traveled as a new mom, you know how much work goes into pumping and storing milk for your baby while you’re away. Currently, there are regulations in place that allow women to fly with breast milk, but despite these laws, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents have still, at times, been making new mothers throw their breast milk away, mainly because they are unaware of these regulations and treat breast milk like any other liquid.
Luckily, all of this is hopefully about to change. The Bottles and Breastfeeding Equipment Screening or BABES Act has just recently passed in the House of Representatives, and, if enacted, it will ensure that TSA employees receive proper training in order to uphold these breast milk regulations. If the law passes in the Senate, the TSA will have 90 days to make sure all security personnel are aware of this exemption.
Currently, according to the TSA, the law is as follows: “Formula, breast milk, and juice in quantities greater than 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters are allowed in carry-on baggage and do not need to fit within a quart-sized bag… You do not need to travel with your child to bring breast milk.”
Simplemost Editor in Chief, Genevieve Lill, has flown with expressed breast milk on several occasions. She’s always been allowed to carry it on, but she has learned a couple valuable tips along the way. TSA agents at one airport told her that if the breast milk is frozen or separated into 3-ounce or smaller quantities, the milk does not need to be tested, which means all containers stay closed and don’t run the risk of being exposed to germs.
“I learned this the hard way when flying home with a large quantity of milk one time,” she says. “I had it all in bags with up to six ounces in each, so I had to wait for TSA to test each and every one with a test strip. It was time-consuming, to say the least!”
Mamas, remember your rights the next time you’re flying. Hopefully the process will soon become easier.
Photo by Daquella manera