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Yes, this is similar to another question, but, judging from the answers, maybe the OP wasn't clear enough in their question. According to the TSA's 3-1-1 rule, you can bring (in your carry-on baggage) as many 100ml containers of liquid that you can fit into a 1-quart (20mmX20mm) bag.

My confusion is this: If I can put the same liquid in each 100ml container, then the 100ml isn't a limit in any meaningful way; the 1-quart bag is. What is the rationale for letting me bring a bag of, say, four 100ml bottles of something but not one 400ml bottle?

The answer cannot be "Because 100ml of some explosive/corrosive liquid is not enough to harm the aircraft" because, from above, you can bring aboard probably 400-500ml of it in separate 100ml bottles in the same 1-quart bag. It can't be "Because, separately, they don't pose a threat" because one could mix them in any of the large empty containers they can bring through. The answer also can't be "Because TSA needs concrete, simple rules", since it would be simpler to just say "Whatever liquids you can fit into a 1-quart baggie" (i.e. a "1-1" rule instead of a "3-1-1" rule).

Seriously, what's the point?

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    Who said there had to be a point? – Michael Hampton Aug 1 at 1:32
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    This is a rant disguised as a question, and responses beyond what was offered in the cited question will be primarily opinion-based. I voted to close. – David Aug 1 at 2:03
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    It's even weirder. Individuals can take up to 10 100ml containers, but obviously not a 1L bottle. For 'safety'. However a dodgy person can take an empty 1L container, which the others could be combined into once onboard? (facepalm) – Mark Mayo Aug 1 at 2:37
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    This seems a lot like security theater, as Bruce Schneier has explained in his essay. A lot of time, adding more restrictions can make some people feel safer, even if it isn't actually making them safer. The TSA could use the excuse that combining the bottles would be suspicious (although you could do that in e.g. a bathroom in the airport), though I can't think of any practical reason. – Gyðja Björnsdóttir Aug 1 at 2:48
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    Well, the video presents the most-plausible explanation I've heard: basically, that of the chemical compounds potent enough to present a threat at quantities below 1000ml, almost all would self-detonate (in a less-destructive way, presumably) if a terrorist were to try to combine separate bottles in the lavatory in the terminal or aircraft. Googling a bit on one of the chemicals in the terror plot which led to the liquid ban reveals that it can be quite problematic when exposed to air. So, now it's starting to make a little sense. – Jemenake Aug 1 at 4:19

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