I took my batteries on fully charged as I have the adaptor to use the the batteries as a power bank for my ipad and phone. This was the only reason for taking them on fully charged. Otherwise I’d probably would’ve drained them just so there are no issues at the airport. Airport security didn’t check battery levels though.
I’ve flown with my Mavic 2 Pro a number of times, on BA, Austrian and Lufthansa. No problems with the batteries in lipo bags and taking the drone on in hand luggage. I take the battery out of the drone, and put all three batteries into lipo bags. In fact on two occasions the security guy has been a drone fan and asked about it and we’ve ended up looking at my photos!
I’ve never been asked whether the batteries were partially discharged. Just checked it again on BA and there is no mention of this, though as others have said, airlines (and check-in/security staff) interpret the rules differently.
Maverick - I always take a print out of the relevant advice from the airline in my hand luggage. Seems a sensible precaution, though I have never had to use it.
Here’s a site that attempts to pull together the different rules:
Check the rules and regs for where you are going and also any airports that you are passing through. You don’t want your drones or the batteries confiscated upon arrival to an airport.
Check with airline that you are flying with that LiPo batteries are permitted on their flight! Don’t forget return fight if with different airline.
Put your drones in hand luggage if you want to guarantee that you will have them on arrival (I don’t trust airport baggage staff with high priced items)…
Failing this, ensure that your travel or home insurance covers the single item value of your drones while traveling (Always check max value of single item covered, its usually £200 to £300 and not the £5000 total value that you can claim for multiple carried items) and then place them in the hold luggage. Flight Batteries have to be in hand luggage and have to be provided suitable protection (battery contacts can’t accidentally be joined, fire resistant bag, box to protect from being damaged if required). (Rules of CAA, FAA, etc).
I’d advise to take with you some paper information about transporting LiPo’s and drones with you. Get this from:
The airline(s) website that you are flying with.
The aviation authorities that you are passing through en-route.
The countries government website that you are entering.
Not everyone knows the rules… with this information, you have a better chance of providing enlightenment with little pain and effort when questioned! People generally do not question their own countries government literature. Better to be safe!