How to Travel with Your Sewing Machine? 7 Important Tips

If you’re a seamstress, there’s a good chance that your sewing machine is an important part of your life. Whether you use it for personal projects or as part of your job, the thought of being away from home without it can be stressful and even more so if you’re traveling.

Luckily, many airlines have improved their policies to allow passengers to carry on sewing machines if they meet certain requirements. Plus, there are plenty of other things to consider when picking up your machine and heading out on vacation (or even just visiting friends). In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about taking your trusty machine with you on the road!

1. Carry-on Preferences

The first thing you’ll need to consider is the size of the carry-on luggage that you’re willing to carry.

  • Check the dimensions of your machine, and make sure it will fit inside the bag without being too bulky or heavy.
  • Consider what else you might want to take with you on your trip (a sewing kit? Fabric?) and how much space these items will take up in your bag.
  • If possible, try out a few different bags at home so that you can get an idea of how big they are and whether this is something that works for your lifestyle. If these points still don’t make sense, fear not! We’ve got some real-life examples below that should help clear things up!

2. Weight Limits

If you’re traveling abroad, it’s important to be aware of the weight limits of your luggage.

The rules vary from country to country. Some countries require that travelers limit their total weight to 50 pounds, while others will allow you to bring up to 70 pounds of baggage on a flight.

As for airline restrictions, there are some carriers that require you to purchase an additional ticket for checked baggage if your trip exceeds 50 pounds. Other airlines will allow you to bring as much as 70 pounds on board with no additional charges.

To find out what weight requirements apply where you’re going, check with the relevant agency before booking your flight tickets or visit their website for more information.

Although, a general point of view according to my experience is

  • Your carry-on luggage has a weight limit of 7kg (15.4lbs).
  • Your checked luggage has a weight limit of 23kg (50lbs).
  • Most sewing machine bags are designed to accommodate machines weighing between 20 and 25 lbs., so if you’re shipping or carrying your machine, make sure it doesn’t exceed 20 pounds when packed in its case. Some models have special features such as telescoping handles and wheels that will allow the bag to support up to 35lbs., but be aware that this type of additional construction will increase the cost of the unit by upwards of $100 USD.
  • If you need something more heavy-duty than what’s standard, consider investing in a custom-built case with thicker walls and more reinforced stitching they’ll run anywhere from $300-$500 USD depending on how many features you’d like included in your design specs!
  • The general rule is: don’t let any item weigh too much for its size if it looks like it might topple over while being moved around at an airport location (especially if there’s no one there helping out), then chances are pretty good that someone will come along soon enough anyway!

3. Insurance and Liability

Insurance is important for your sewing machine if you plan to travel with it. This is especially true if you have a vintage machine or one that was expensive, such as an industrial sewing machine.

While there are general guidelines for what types of insurance might be right for your situation, it’s best to consider all of the options before making a decision.

You’ll want to look into what type of insurance coverage would be best for your needs and how much coverage will cost (the price can vary widely).

It may also be helpful to know that some plans offer different kinds of protection; while most insurances cover theft or damage caused by accident, some policies include liability protection as well.

It’s important that you find out exactly what kind of coverage your policy covers and make sure it’s right for whatever situation arises during your travels!

4. Airline Comparisons

When it comes to finding the best deals, there are various ways you can do so. One is by comparing airlines and looking at their policies before attempting to fly with your sewing machine.

The first step in comparison shopping is to look up the airlines that service your destination and see what they have listed on their website.

Many of them offer checked baggage fees, while others don’t have any fees associated with checking luggage at all.

You should also be aware of any size requirements for carry-on items so that you’re not surprised when you arrive at the airport and find out that your bag won’t fit in an overhead bin or under a seat in coach class.

This will save you from paying extra fees or having to wait until after everyone’s boarded in order for someone else’s suitcase or garment bag to be removed from their compartment so yours can be put there instead!

5. Packing and bags

Now that you have all the supplies for your sewing machine, it’s time to pack.

  • Use a bag that has wheels.
  • Use a bag that was built to carry a sewing machine.
  • Use a bag with hard bottom and top (this is important because if you put your sewing machine on the floor of an airplane or bus, severe damage can occur).
  • Use a bag with a hard front as well as side panels on any bag that doesn’t already have them built-in (I use this same advice when packing suitcases for travel).

6. Security Checks

If your machine is in a hard case and you have the proper tools, it should be fine to check the sewing machine through. If not, then you’ll have to wrap it up in bubble wrap or something similar and check it as baggage.

Checking your machine as baggage may result in higher fees charged by the airline and/or additional fees charged by the TSA when they inspect your bag before boarding (if they don’t just charge you extra because they can). This can add up quickly if you’re paying out of pocket for each flight!

7. Sewing while Traveling

Sewing while traveling is not a difficult thing to do. It just needs some planning and preparation. If you choose the right machine and accessories, you can sew while traveling.

Here are some tips on how to do sewing while traveling:

1. Make sure you have a good quality sewing machine. You will need something that can handle heavy fabrics because it is going to be used for a long period of time.

2. Choose the right type of fabric for your project. The fabric should be lightweight but strong enough to last longer than other fabrics that are available at home or in the store.

3. Make sure that your sewing machine has an adjustable stitch length setting so that you can adjust it according to the type of fabric being sewn and also, make sure that it has a wide range of stitches, including decorative stitches such as satin stitch or zigzag stitch so that there won’t be any gaps between them when they are sewn together one by one on your project!

Can I Carry A Sewing Machine On A Plane?

You can carry a sewing machine on a plane. You can check it as luggage, carry it as a carry-on, or even have your sewing machine travel with you in the cabin on most airlines.

Some airlines allow you to buy an extra seat for your sewing machine (not recommended), while others will allow you to check it in its own case as part of your checked luggage allowance.

If there is no room for the box at the bottom of your suitcase, then take care not to overpack so that there’s enough space for both items.

Can I Carry A Sewing Machine On A Train?

The short answer is yes, but there are some important considerations to keep in mind before you pack up your sewing machine for a trip. Here’s what you need to know about how to carry a sewing machine on a train:

Will the train be full? The more people who are traveling with you, the harder it can be to find an empty seat. If it’s a busy day or night, your chances of finding an empty seat will be slimmer.

Is it heavy? How much weight your sewing machine weighs depends on its size and dimensions. If it’s made from metal or plastic, its weight may vary based on the thickness and composition of those materials (think of metals like aluminum, steel, or stainless steel).

What type of seat does the train have? Most trains offer seats that recline flat onto cushions if you’re able to get one of those seats. However, some trains don’t offer these seats so you’ll have to find another option if you want to put your sewing machine on a seat that reclines flat.

The next time you travel with your sewing machine, keep these tips in mind and enjoy!

The next time you travel with your sewing machine, keep these tips in mind and enjoy!

  • Keep it safe and secure.
  • Pack it properly.
  • Make sure it is insured (if possible).
  • Make sure you can carry it on the plane.
  • Make sure you can carry it on the train or bus or boat; whatever mode of transportation you are taking, make sure that your sewing machine will fit in the luggage compartments or under seats if necessary.


This article has been a helpful guide to understanding how to travel with your sewing machine. We hope it will be useful for those who have not done this before, or perhaps even help you rethink some of your current packing habits. As you can see from all the tips and tricks above, traveling with a sewing machine isn’t hard at all! All it takes is a little bit of planning and preparation before taking off on those epic adventures across this great big world of ours.

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