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How to Travel with an Urn

Whether scattering your loved one’s ashes abroad or simply taking an urn home, traveling with cremated remains does not have to be a painstaking process. This helpful guide will teach you how to travel with an urn, so you can avoid any potential mishaps along the way. If you are preparing for a short trip, you should pack and secure the urn depending on the type and material. Take extra precaution by packing the urn in a sealed plastic bag or by taping the lid securely in place. You should also secure the urn to prevent it from rolling around or tipping over during transit. We offer a wide variety of tips and instructions for traveling near or far. Keep reading to learn more.

How to Travel with an Urn by Air

Trips over long distances may require flying. Some airlines do not allow cremated remains as checked baggage, so you should check with your airline to learn more about possible restrictions. Transportation Security Officers will not open crematory containers under any circumstances, according to the TSA. However, you can make screening an easier process for all involved by purchasing a temporary or permanent crematory container made of a lightweight material, such as wood or plastic. If the container generates an opaque image, security officers will not be able to determine what is inside the container and the container may not be permitted for travel. Your urn might also be subject to additional screening if it triggers an alarm during the screening process.

American Airlines, Delta, Frontier, Southwest, Spirit, and United all permit crematory containers, but some of these airlines require death or cremation certificates as extra documentation. Sturdier urns are always better for traveling than urns made from glass or ceramic materials. You should account for any delays in security by arriving at the airport early. You may also decide to call ahead of time to confirm with your airline that you will be traveling with cremated remains. Your funeral director may be better equipped to advise you what kind of urn is best for travel. Preparing for travel can also depend on the type of lid your urn includes. Urns with threaded lids are at reduced risk of opening in midair. Urns with lift-off or hinged lids will require extra measures to prevent them from opening.

How to Travel Internationally with an Urn

If you are transporting cremains internationally, travel can become a bit more complicated. Some countries require that cremated remains are sent by a licensed funeral director. You should contact the embassy for the country you plan to visit. Policies can change, so you should not rely on a website for specific rules or legal requirements. Ask your embassy representative whether any additional authorizations are required or if there are any forms to complete.

Urn materials that can be easily scanned include cardboard, cloth, fiberboard, wood, plastic, and transparent glass. Avoid urns made from stone, granite, metals, or ceramics when traveling. Alternatively, you can ship cremated ashes if you would like to avoid the hassle of air travel. If you have any questions about how to travel with an urn, please contact Legacy Headstones today for additional information.