Traveling with brand new electronics

Old Oct 25, 17, 9:12 am
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Flying out of US, handcarry of 2-3 boxed iphones, is this allowed?

Will a passenger be questioned if he will handcarry 3 units of brandnew iphones?
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Old Oct 25, 17, 9:21 am
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Why would you even think of this?

i routinely travel with 3-4 cellphones, admittedly not boxed, but have never even had any comments or questions.
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Old Oct 25, 17, 9:21 am
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Originally Posted by boybi View Post
Will a passenger be questioned if he will handcarry 3 units of brandnew iphones?
It depends - probably not but you might be asked to open the box and show they work. If it's commercial purposes (ie you intend to resell them in your home country as opposed to give them away as gifts) then you may need to check there's no export forms required (I do not know if the US requires one, in Canada shipments over $2500 do) to comply with the export associated regulations.
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Old Oct 25, 17, 9:33 am
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Originally Posted by atsak View Post
It depends - probably not but you might be asked to open the box and show they work. If it's commercial purposes (ie you intend to resell them in your home country as opposed to give them away as gifts) then you may need to check there's no export forms required (I do not know if the US requires one, in Canada shipments over $2500 do) to comply with the export associated regulations.
None of this will happen. Will TSA ask that the boxes be put in a bin? It depends on if they're enforcing any of the goofy "pull everything out of your bag today" things that have randomly been in place for a few months. But, the OP won't have to remove them from the box and turn them on.
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Old Oct 25, 17, 11:01 am
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Originally Posted by catocony View Post
None of this will happen. Will TSA ask that the boxes be put in a bin? It depends on if they're enforcing any of the goofy "pull everything out of your bag today" things that have randomly been in place for a few months. But, the OP won't have to remove them from the box and turn them on.
The TSA can require you to open boxes for inspection. In practice they generally do not. To suggest it won't happen is likely correct, but there are absolutely no guarantees in TSA world - they arbitrarily make things up anyway sometimes.

I really think none of this will happen, they will just sail right through.
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Old Oct 25, 17, 6:13 pm
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Thanks all!

Just want to make sure if TSA will allow this many phones being carried by one person. It’s ok for them to open the boxes as these phones will be for gifts and not to be resold.
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Old Oct 25, 17, 6:34 pm
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TSA won't object to you carrying the phones but these days with electronics out I would consider it likely that you have to open the boxes.
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Old Oct 26, 17, 9:06 pm
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I regularly travel out of the US with 2 phones. I've never had an issue with it when I travel to Europe and the Middle East.

I do have an upcoming trip to another very particular country with a relatively strict customs policy that allows only one phone per passenger, but that is an anomaly. I doubt this is the country you are going to - it doesn't really see many Americans travel there.
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Old Oct 31, 17, 1:18 am
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As others have noted, I have two phones US and Chinese I fly with all the time everywhere.

As to new sealed in box going out of USA with TSA can't see a problem. I have yet to see anyone require phones to require separate screen. If anything they are always reminding us to put it with our x-rayed stuff, LOL. Tablets would be another matter, but phones not an issue.

You don't mention where you are taking them. Does the country you bring them in allow their import w/o taxes even as gifts, assuming you aren't bringing in for paying friends.
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Old Oct 31, 17, 2:13 pm
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I would be more concerned about country this person arrives to.

Some countries let up to two phones in no-questions-asked, but more than that and one could be asked to show receipts and pay import duties.
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Old Oct 31, 17, 2:53 pm
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Exclamation Moderator's Note

Folks,

@boybi is concerned about clearing TSA security with two or three new in-the-box iPhone8s.
Originally Posted by boybi View Post
Just want to make sure if TSA will allow this many phones being carried by one person. It’s ok for them to open the boxes as these phones will be for gifts and not to be resold.
He or she is not asking about getting them through customs at their destination (MNL?).

Please keep your responses cogent to the question posed by the OP.

Thank you,

TWA884
Travel safety/Security co-moderator
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Old Nov 1, 17, 7:23 am
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Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
TSA won't object to you carrying the phones but these days with electronics out I would consider it likely that you have to open the boxes.
I traveled with three unopened iPhones in boxes in my cabin baggage on domestic and international flights within recent days. I didnít have to take them out at the screening checkpoints nor for customs. But this is a situation of YMMV. FWIW, Iíve never had the TSA ask me to open unopened iPhone boxes in cabin baggage, but some others have ó but it seems to be less common than common.

Last edited by TWA884; Jul 26, 19 at 9:14 am
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Old Nov 1, 17, 10:37 am
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TSA does not restrict the quantity of mobile phones or for that matter any electronics. The list of restrictions is on the TSA website.

As with anything else you are carrying, understand that any box, whether it contains a phone or paper clips, may be opened by TSA and that may happen at random or for a reason.

While there is no current requirement that passengers operate their electronics, it makes sense for you to have a sufficient charge on the phone to do so if asked at any point.
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Old Nov 5, 17, 8:41 am
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Thanks for all the replies. From experience, brand new iphones already have sufficient charge from the factory, so this won’t be a problem if TSA will require that the phones be switched on.
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Old Nov 7, 17, 5:06 am
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Originally Posted by boybi View Post
Thanks for all the replies. From experience, brand new iphones already have sufficient charge from the factory, so this wonít be a problem if TSA will require that the phones be switched on.
They are all supposed to have some kind of limited charge when shipped from the factories, so that shouldn't be a problem. But IIRC Apple used to recommend something like fully charging the phone battery before using them unplugged. I don't know if that would be a reason for me to avoid wanting an open-boxed phone or not, but for some it may be. Just something to consider if playing the re-sale market for these devices.

Last edited by TWA884; Jul 26, 19 at 9:15 am
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