Oxygen Concentrator in Checked Luggageby Courtney Sornberger
An oxygen concentrator, a compressor that turns ambient air into almost pure oxygen, is a necessity for people who struggle with severe respiratory conditions.
But with airplane regulations as strict as they are on electronic devices, is it possible to check your oxygen concentrator into your luggage? Or will you have to find another method of travel?
Let’s take a look at airplane regulations regarding oxygen concentrators and how to add an oxygen concentrator in checked luggage–safely and legally.
What this article covers:
- Can You Check an Oxygen Concentrator on a Plane?
- How to Add an Oxygen Concentrator as Checked Baggage
Can You Check an Oxygen Concentrator on a Plane?
Based on our experience, yes, you can take an oxygen concentrator as checked luggage but only on a few select airlines. Most require you to bring a small, travel oxygen concentrator machine into the cabin, even if you aren’t going to use it.
As we know, air travel regulations are very strict on electronic devices. While it’s understandable, it has made it difficult for people needing to travel with medical devices, especially those containing or producing oxygen.
Today, it is relatively easy for people to take portable oxygen concentrators on airlines due to more understanding regulations and the compact size of the machines.
But, after conducting our own research, there are two things to consider before booking your flight.
Oxygen Concentrator Brand
Not all portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) are built to work with air travel. Before you purchase a portable oxygen concentrator, make sure it is air travel safe.
This shouldn’t be difficult, as most of the best oxygen concentrators are perfectly safe for planes. If you already have an oxygen concentrator for your car or other sporting activities, check the information booklet. It should also be safe for air travel.
Not all airlines have the same regulations when it comes to oxygen concentrators. For example, Delta Airlines' policies on oxygen concentrators might be different from those of Spirit Airlines.
So, make sure you know whether you can check in the oxygen concentrator or if you need to bring it into the cabin, even if you aren't going to use it during the flight.
Some airlines only allow certain brands on board while others require portable oxygen concentrators to use specific batteries. Make sure you are well versed in the airline’s POC policies by visiting their website or getting in touch before buying a ticket.
How to Add an Oxygen Concentrator as Checked Baggage
According to our observations, here’s how to take an oxygen concentrator on a plane.
Step 1: Check The POC Specification
If you already have a portable oxygen concentrator, check the device specifications for any information regarding air travel. Make sure the machine is air travel safe. If you can’t find information in the user manual, phone the brand and ask whether you can take it on a plane.
If you don’t have a POC yet, browse our portable travel oxygen concentrators for a high-quality and affordable option.
Step 2: Check The Carrier’s Regulations
Next, check the airline's portable oxygen concentrator regulations. See whether they allow checked-in oxygen concentrators or if you need to bring the machine into the cabin. Whichever one they allow, they’ll provide detailed instructions on their unique requirements.
Most airlines also have a website page listing the manufacturers they allow, the regulations for each, and their battery requirements. If there is no information available online, phone the carrier. And, of course, if they don’t allow POC at all, give another airline a call.
Step 3: Book Your Flight
When you have found a carrier that accepts your portable oxygen concentrator, book a flight. Ensure the airline knows you are bringing a portable oxygen concentrator, whether as checked luggage or a carry-on.
On the day of your flight:
- Arrive ahead of time to check in and go through security with your machine.
- Make sure you have a prescription and a doctor's letter to verify your condition.
- Pack extra batteries to cover the flight time and then some.
- Don’t forget a plug to charge your concentrator if need be.
Portable oxygen concentrators have made it much more convenient for people with respiratory issues to travel. And with more inclusive airline regulations, it’s easier to find airlines that accommodate medical needs like oxygen concentrators.
While most airlines allow oxygen concentrators, there are a few exceptions. Luckily, the above guide will help you quickly and easily navigate the process.
Did you find the blog helpful? If so, consider checking out other guides:
- The Best Portable Oxygen Concentrators for Hiking
- Travel with Oxygen Concentrator
- United Airlines Portable Oxygen Concentrator
- How to Select an Oxygen Concentrator
- How Does Inogen Produce and Deliver Oxygen?
- Where Can I Buy an Oxygen Concentrator?
- What Is a Portable Oxygen Concentrator?
- Is a 5 Liter Oxygen Concentrator Big Enough?
- Choosing the Best Oxygen Concentrator
- Inogen Models
- Is It Possible to Get a Non-Prescription Oxygen Concentrator?
- Inogen GS 100 Review
- Is the Inogen G5 Continuous Flow?
- Oxygen Delivery Systems: Conventional ‘Tank Oxygen’ vs New Oxygen Machines
- How Does an Oxygen Concentrator Work?