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How Much Cash on a Domestic Flight? — The Answer

How Much Cash on a Domestic Flight? — The Answer

If you’ve ever traveled internationally, then you’re probably aware that there’s a limit as to how much cash you can carry on an international flight.

But is that same rule applicable to domestic flights?

Since it’s now the Era of credit cards and other contactless payment methods, such as Google Pay and Samsung Pay, it may be unnecessary to travel with large amounts of cash unless you are planning a big business deal.

But it’s still good to know how much cash you can bring on an airplane- just in case.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll win the lottery or discover that you’re the heir to your long- lost great-uncle’s estate. Or maybe you’ll decide to liquidate your assets and buy a condo in Florida.

Hey! It’s always fun to dream big!

In the event that you ever need to carry a large amount of cash with you on an airplane, this article will explain everything you need to know about traveling with cash on domestic flights, including any limits on the amount of cash you can bring.

How much cash can you carry on a domestic flight?

There are no limits to the amount of cash that you can carry on a domestic flight in the US. However, you should prepare to be questioned by airport security when carrying large amounts of cash on a plane. You also need to be mindful of how you pack your wad of cash to prevent it from being lost or stolen. And, you may want to consider alternatives to carrying a lot of cash when traveling. 


Cash-carrying limits on domestic flights

The good news is that there is no limit as to how much cash you can carry on domestic flights, which makes it much less complicated to travel within the US with liquidated assets.

However, you are only allowed to carry a maximum of $10,000 in cash when traveling internationally.

This includes other ‘monetary instruments’, including but not limited to travelers’ checks, cashiers’ checks, money orders, gold coins, stocks, and bonds.

If you’re traveling with a group of friends or family, this amount is determined collectively, so you can carry $10,000 and have your partner hold onto another $5000.

And all funds need to be accounted for and declared with the customs agent.

Fortunately, you don’t need to worry about customs or cash limits when traveling on domestic flights, but you may need to deal with airport security.


Prepare yourself for questioning

Even though it’s perfectly legal to travel throughout the US with large amounts of cash, it still raises eyebrows.

While this can be a major inconvenience if you have a legitimate reason for carrying all that dough, if you are honest with yourself, you’ll admit that it does seem a little suspicious.

So, you need to brace yourself for intensive questioning from airport security when traveling with a lot of money. If you truly have a good reason for carrying so much cash-and ideally documentation to back up your story- you’ll probably be fine.

But it doesn’t always work out like that. Often, the wad of cash is stuffed in an evidence bag for suspicion of illegal activity- presumably drugs or racketeering. And you may or may not get your money back- even if charges are never filed against you. This may sound unfair, but that’s national security for you.


Safely traveling with large amounts of cash

If you manage to make it past the checkpoint, you still need to worry about the real criminals who may be lurking in the airport.

Despite that top-notch airport security, criminals still get their frequent flier miles in, too. And there you are with a duffel bag full of cash.

You should never store your cash in your checked baggage as it changes a lot of hands and could potentially get lost. Instead, you should place your cash in a carry-on bag secured with a TSA lock and never let it out of your sight.

In any case, as far as travelling with a lot of cash goes, you should definitely make sure to visit the official website of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

On their subpage “What Can I Bring”, you will find valuable info on almost all items possible, always letting you know exactly what you CAN and CANNOT bring on your flights.


Alternatives to carrying cash on a flight

While you should always travel with some cash in the event of an emergency, it’s safest to just pay with your debit card wherever you can and carry minimal amounts of cash when traveling. You can also use smartphone apps,too – provided your antivirus subscription is up to date and your devices are secured with a password or encryption.

But sometimes, you will need to travel with at least a fair amount of cash- especially if you’re going somewhere like Cuba where American ATM cards don’t work.

If you are traveling within the US, alternative payment methods should be fine- unless you plan on making a big ticket purchase and your bank doesn’t have a branch at your destination.

Then, you may need to take your chances with airport security and potential thieves- either that or ask the person you plan on doing business with if they’d be OK with taking a check.


Frequently asked questions on “How much cash you can carry on a domestic flight”


Can you still pay for a plane ticket with cash?

Major airlines and travel agencies still accept cash as a method of payment for both domestic and international flights. However, you may need to go through a more extensive security screening and provide additional verification of your identity when paying in cash- but this isn’t always the case.


Can an airport scanner detect money?

When carrying large amounts of money onto a plane, the airport scanner will detect what looks like an unidentified dense mass in your suitcase. This will usually cause them to investigate and discover that it’s money. Although they aren’t supposed to seize anything that isn’t a national security threat, they may occasionally seize the cash on suspicion of drug activity.