Traveling overseas can be a bore, and everyone is trying to find a way to entertain themselves during long flights. Some like to read, others to work, while tech fans want to entertain themselves with their VR headset.
And as technology advances and new gadgets appear on the market, we constantly face the dilemma of whether these gadgets may be carried and used on a plane.
So, can your VR headset accompany you on a plane? Most certainly, yes! VR headsets are allowed on planes, preferably in carry-on luggage, to prevent damage or accidental activation.
However, this isn’t the only condition you must fulfill to board your VR set – there are some additional rules you must follow as per the Federal Aviation Administration guidelines. Before you embark on your next long journey, let us fill you in on the deets regarding traveling with a VR headset on a plane.
How to Clear It at the Airport Security
When getting ready for any plane trip, always be sure you are following the regulations set by the Federal Aviation Administration. There are rules on different items and how they must be packed and stored for the plane trip.
To be sure that you have covered all bases, here is a closer look at the TSA Regulations section defining the packing of a portable electronic device.
As per the regulations, you can take battery-operated electronic devices on checked or carry-on luggage. The VR headset runs on a lithium-ion battery, so feel free to bring it on the plane with you. Turn your device off before boarding, and don’t turn it on until you land.
Taking the VR Headset in the Carry-On Bag
Passengers must place personal electronic devices on plastic X-Ray screening trays during airport security. They will ask you to remove any devices from your carry-on luggage, such as your laptop, smartphone, tablets, cameras, etc.
A word of advice is to pack the VR headset conveniently so you can easily remove it from the carry-on bag. This will save you time, protect the headset from damage, and allow you to place it back in the bag easily.
However, just because the headset is safe from being thrown around doesn’t mean it cannot be damaged. Be sure to protect the headset from possible scratches or permanent damage.
Keeping the VR Headset in the Checked-in Baggage
Packing the VR headset in your checked-in baggage is an option, although not an advisable one. There’s never a guarantee that your luggage will be handled carefully and maintain its original shape.
The Federal Aviation Administration strongly recommends carrying lithium ion or lithium metal battery-operated devices in carry-on bags. One reason is the safety of the device and avoiding damage; another is to prevent possible activation of the device during the flight.
Take precaution measures if a checked-in bag must be your choice for packing the headset. Be sure the headset is off before packing it in a hard-cover carrying case. If a specialized case is not an option, use lots of bubble wrap to protect the headset from all that “beating.”
Using the VR Headset on the Airplane
Once you figure out the packing situation, you may decide to prefer to use your VR headset mid-flight. If so, follow these steps to prepare your device before departure and enjoy it during the flight:
Like you do with your phone, you should check that the battery of your VR headset is full. The battery life is approximately three hours if wifi is disabled.
Bring your charger along to avoid being interrupted in the middle of a game or movie. Be sure to also bring batteries for all the accompanying accessories. What’s the use of a fully charged headset if you can’t use the controllers?
Nowadays, it seems impossible for someone to forget their headphones, but it never hurts to be reminded, just in case.
We often get annoyed by a screaming child or a loud conversation between two people during a long flight. Well, guess what? Hearing about your VR experience is also annoying to some, especially since they cannot participate in the excitement.
Prepare Your Game or Movie List
Before leaving for your trip, be sure you have downloaded the list of games and movies you wish to enjoy during your flight. Afterward, test them with the Airplane Mode turned on and the wifi disabled. You want to ensure everything is functioning perfectly to avoid any disturbances.
Choose a Window Seat
Choosing a window seat is most convenient for VR headset users as they can isolate themselves from the surroundings and other passengers. That way, you’ll avoid being tapped on the shoulder by another passenger to get out of their seat. After all, no one likes to be interrupted in the middle of an exciting VR adventure!
Be Mindful of Your Surroundings
Planes are crowded with people eager to get off the plane – which they prepare for by resting or taking a nap. If you plan to use the headset, respect other passengers’ personal space and peace.
Be sure not to hit someone while they are taking a nap or accidentally push the flight attendant handing out hot coffee or tea. You may want to shorten the boring flight, but you shouldn’t do it at the expense of the other people on the plane.
The rules of the Federal Aviation Administration are quite clear when it comes to carrying a VR headset on a plane. However, always check the airline rules as they vary from one airline to the next.
It is up to you whether you wish to bring the headset in your carry-on or checked baggage. Most people take it with them in carry-on bags for safety reasons because, let’s face it – most VR brands aren’t cheap! You may also want to have it on you to avoid overstepping the allowed weight limit per bag.
Either way, having a VR experience is possible on a plane and even preferred in such a crowded and noisy space!