On my last flight I was served a meal with a metal knife and fork, which was a pleasant change compared to plastic utensils. This gave me the idea of packing my own utensils for the next flight as a small way of improving the economy experience.

However, would I be allowed to take a standard knife and fork through airport security? By 'standard' I'm referring to something like this:

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To make the question less broad I'm restricting it to North American and European airports.

  • I tried to take the silverware I received on the airplane (Lufthansa) and got my butter knife confiscated in Minneapolis because it was serrated even though I got it from an airplane. I took this set of silverware from Kalispell mt to New York to Aruba and nothing happened. I was trying to be environmentally conscious. Wtf type of damage can someone do with a serrated reusable butter knife?
    – Lily
    Dec 30, 2019 at 0:54

1 Answer 1


From the US side, the TSA run a website, giving generic advice on whether items can taken as carry-on, in checked luggage, or not at all. Note the important disclaimer that the final decision rests with the TSA officer on whether an item is allowed through the checkpoint, but searching for "utensils" gives the response:

Carry On Bags: Yes

Checked Bags: Yes

Knives, except for plastic or round-bladed butter knives, are not allowed in carry-on bags.

So, you're likely to be ok with the fork and the spoons, but the table knife is liable to be confiscated.

  • 3
    "round-bladed butter knives" seem to be the kind I want to take on board
    – JonathanReez
    Jun 8, 2018 at 16:56
  • 5
    I would be mightily surprised if you consistently got through with those. Don’t take your grandmother’s silverware if you’re not ready to abandon it at the security checkpoint...
    – jcaron
    Jun 8, 2018 at 17:07
  • 1
    @JonathanReez It'll depend on whether they mean the general meaning of any non-serrated table knife or the strict "this knife is only for butter" meaning!
    – mkennedy
    Jun 8, 2018 at 18:06
  • 1
    I have had forks confiscated in Europe on two occasions. Both times I left one in my bag accidentally. It triggers an in depth bag search that can take a while. So I wouldn't recommend it.
    – Avelina
    Jun 8, 2018 at 20:11
  • A true butter knife usually has a point on the end. Not very sharp, but a point nonetheless. libertytabletop.com/product/lexington-butter-knife What the TSA is referring to is probably a non-serrated dinner knife. americanhotel.com/…
    – shoover
    Aug 6, 2022 at 16:04

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