Electronics are one of the hardest things to pack when you are going to the airport. You need to make sure that you can bring them on the plane, and you need to pack them well, so they do not break.
Common electronics include laptops, tablets, and video game consoles, like an Xbox One.
According to the TSA website, you can bring an Xbox One (and any other kind of Xbox) in your checked bag and carry-on bag.
An Xbox One weighs anywhere from six to ten pounds, so it will take up between ten and twenty percent of your weight limit in a standard checked bag, which is fifty pounds.
Here is American Airlines’ checked bag policy, which is similar to the other major airlines:
For all regions, except to/from Australia or New Zealand, your checked bag allowance is 50 lbs / 23 kgs.
For First / Business, and all confirmed customers on flights to/from Australia or New Zealand, the weight allowance is 70 lbs / 32kgs for complimentary bags and 50 lbs / 23 kgs for excess charged bags.
So, you need to make sure that everything else in your standard economy bag is not more than 35 to 40 pounds total; otherwise, you will have to pay extra bag fees.
But, if you pack your Xbox in your carry-on bag, there are no weight limits. You just need to be able to lift the bag into the overhead bin on your own.
Packing your Xbox in your carry-on bag is usually better so you can keep it with you for the whole journey. There is less risk of the console getting damaged or lost if you keep it with you.
The next section will help you pack your Xbox for a flight.
How to Pack an Xbox for a Flight
While you can put your Xbox One in your checked bag, it will be much safer in your carry-on bag.
If you pack your Xbox in your checked bag, you have to secure it very well, so it doesn’t move around during the trip.
Place it in the middle of your bag, and wrap it in soft objects like clothes, towels, or even bubble wrap. Then, if it does shift around during the flight, it is more protected.
Multiple people will handle your bag between security and being brought to and loaded onto the plane. If your Xbox is not securely packed in your suitcase, it will move around and can get damaged as your bag moves through the airport.
If you check any electronic items, you should know that airplane cargo holds may get cold during a flight. Read more about how cold airplane cargo holds get here.
All fragile items are better off in your carry-on bag because you have the bag with you during the whole trip, and you can make sure you are careful with it.
You can make sure your bag doesn’t hit anything, and you can carefully place it in the overhead bin on the plane instead of trusting the baggage handlers to do it.
Another option for packing your Xbox is to bring it in the box it came in. You can carry it on the plane as long as you meet size requirements and baggage limits.
Always check with the airline to verify the carry-on bag size limits. For American Airlines, carry-on bags “shouldn’t exceed 22 x 14 x 9 inches (including handles and wheels).”
You can also check it in a cardboard box. Learn more about using a cardboard box as checked luggage here.
Do you Have to Take your Xbox out at Airport Security?
If you check your bag with your Xbox inside, you don’t have to worry about taking your Xbox out of your bag. When it goes through the security checkpoint, the security agents will scan your bag through a machine, and they will only open the bag if they need to do an extra screening.
But don’t worry about your Xbox if your bag is screened. You can have it in checked luggage, and they will not remove it from your bag.
On the other hand, you will have to remove your Xbox if you pack it in your carry-on bag. Video game consoles are treated the same as laptops and other large electronic devices regarding security procedures.
When you pack your carry-on before going to the airport, make sure your Xbox is easily accessible so you can take it out of your bag at the security checkpoint.
When it’s your turn to place your bags on the security conveyor belt, the TSA requests that you “please place the console in a separate bin for X-ray screening.”
Then, once you pass through security, you can place your Xbox back in your bag, and you will not have to remove it again at the airport.
You May Also Like: Can I Bring a PlayStation on a Plane?
Are Xbox Game Discs Allowed on a Plane?
If you’re bringing your Xbox on a plane, you probably want to bring some games too. In short, game discs and CDS in general are allowed on planes.
To learn more, visit our guide on how to bring video games discs on a plane.