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Luggage Transfer Correos

External Chargers on Airplanes

2020 Camino Guides
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017
I have just bought an Anker Astra E1 6700 for use on my CF starting next week - but there seems to be some doubt about taking external chargers on airplanes. What is the situation - hand luggage, hold luggage, or not at all?
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
Check with your airline or the TSA website? They may be better sources than the mixed bag of anecdotal info you'll get here.

I loved the title of your thread ... I was picturing plugs on the wings of the plane...
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I believe that it should be in the cabin, not in the hold.

According to FAA rules

Spare (uninstalled) lithium ion and lithium metal batteries must be carried in carry-on baggage only. When a carry-on bag is checked at the gate or at planeside, all spare lithium batteries must be removed from the bag and kept with the passenger in the aircraft cabin.

I'm not sure if that applies to external chargers like yours, but I have always carried mine in the cabin.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
From my experience, the issue seems to be fully charged lithium ion batteries in your checked bags. Also, some devices; laptops, etc. have lithium ion batteries that have proven problematic and are presently banned from commercial airlines.

If the external battery pack / charger is carried in your carry-on bag, and available for inspection, you should be okay. Double check with your appropriate aviation authority, e.g. ww.tsa.org (US).

Hope this helps.
 

Simon B

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles and Camino Frances. VDLP Spring 2019
Do you need one? Most phones charge will last a day and there are always plenty of charging points in alburgues. Save some weight and leave it at home:)
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I used to bring one. Then I thought better of it and left it behind to save weight.

Presently, I carry an Apple, Euro-spec adapter with two round prongs. I bought it in Spain. It is the size of an old-school Zippo cigarette lighter and stows easily, together with a one meter charging cable.

I put these items in a small (snack size) ziplock and throw them in a cargo pocket. Where I go, the phone charger and cable go...

Hope this helps.
 
Last edited:

HeidiL

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2004-), Portugués, Madrid, 4/5 Plata, 1/8 Levante, 1/8 Lana, Augusta, hospitalera Grado.
Bring it, especially it it's cheap and lightweight. I see so many phones left charging on their own in albergues while the owners go out to dinner - and I have heard so many reports of stolen phones. Nobody can be bothered to steal my bright green, €10 powerbank - and then I can charge my phone from that...
 

daesdaemar

Camino-holic
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles - twice
I travel domestically and internationally with my power packs in my carry-on luggage and have never had a problem. Lithium batteries are generally not allowed in the checked baggage.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances. 2001
Via de la plata 2008
Arles -Piemonte-Frances-Cee 2014
(Bastan-Francés) 2019
I have just bought an Anker Astra E1 6700 for use on my CF starting next week - but there seems to be some doubt about taking external chargers on airplanes. What is the situation - hand luggage, hold luggage, or not at all?
Phones are one of the things most likely to be stolen. I am more comfortable with my phone in my pocket and a $10 battery charging unattended on the wall.
TSA has no problem with a small lithium battery in the cabin.
Good luck and buen camino.

Gary
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
Anyone with the time to spare could try searching "airplane lithium fire" in Godgle (other search engines are available). Given the known instabilities of Lithium batteries current theory seems to be that if your battery should burst into flames in the cabin it is easier dealt with than if it bursts into flames in the hold.

That said, at present, most airport security seems much more concerned by the havoc a passenger could wreak with 150ml of shampoo or sunscreen than whether that lump of plastics, metals, and a flammable electrolyte could represent an excludable hazard. Students of complexity might enjoy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithium-ion_battery.

The generality of advice and current boarding control theory seems to be "hand luggage".

I am aware that it is impossible to walk Camino without a mobile phone so I won't suggest it as an alternative control of the risk. ;)
 

cher99840

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
I’m looking for recommendations on which portable charger pack to purchase. While it would be nice to save the weight, I plan to use my phone for camera, maps, and guidebook while walking and prefer not to take chances. There is also the issue of less risk to charging the portable than charging the iPhone previously mentioned.
 

Roland49

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2019 July
I did bring a 10.000mAh (220gr.) Powerbank and my FastCharge Loader for my Phone.
I used the Powerbank a few times as back up on the way between albergues. I used my phone for Instagram, waylogging, photos and via the most used app as a guidebook. Called / mailed few times ahead to ask for accomodation. Most of the time my phone lasts 2 days per charge (5000mAh battery).

If you will use your phone as mentioned you need to charge every evening or on the go.
Bring charger and powerbank.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
IMHO and experience it comes down to how long your phone battery will last before requiring a recharge, and what size power pack you need.

If your smartphone battery tops off at, say 1,300 mAH, it is IMHO false economy to carry a larger, heavier power bank charger that holds perhaps 20,000 mAH, or more. This means that you could recharge your phone completely about 15 times, before the power bank charger was fully depleted....but why?

In my experience, my iPhone Xr last two full days, with a GPS guide, like one of the newer versions of the Wise Pilgrim Guides running all the time. The sole other use while I am walking is as a camera. I don't use social media, and stay away from email and texts until I stop for a break or at the end of my day. My usage is a balance between going dark while on Camino, and using the smartphone as a tool, like a digital Swiss Army Knife.

I carry the smallest available external power cell that will top off my iPhone - 1,300 mAH. I think the charger pack holds 1,500 mAH worth of replacement power. That gives me from 3 - 4 days between plug in charging. But it weighs a fraction of one of the biggest most powerful charging packs.

Has ANYONE needed that sort of time in-between plug in charging on the Camino de Santiago? I am sure these folks are among the exception rather than the rule.

As a general statement, the greater the number of mAH capacity the external power pack charger holds, the larger and heavier it will be. After water, batteries, of all formats, are about the most dense,heaviest item you would be carrying.

So, my considered advice is to obtain the smallest, lightest external power pack that will support one (but no more than two complete recharges of your smartphone.

Hope this helps.
 

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