As quickly as the ink dried on the decree making Star Wars-themed Coke bottle unable to fly, a reversal of that policy is now in effect. You won’t need to hire the Millennium Falcon to take your souvenirs home anymore.
“We have completed our review, and instructed our officers to treat these as an oversized liquid. Because these bottles contain liquids larger than 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters), they should be put in checked baggage or emptied to be brought on as carry-on item.”Transportation Security Administration statement
Fans are happy because the inexpensive souvenir can now travel home on their return flight from the galaxy far, far away. Disney has instituted a 3-bottle purchase limit to prevent hoarding, however, so the bottles still fall under some regulation. One rule that does still apply to the bottles—that resemble thermal detonators—for flight is they must be empty if they go in your carry-on luggage. Full bottles are only allowed in checked baggage.
Black Spire: Tourism by the numbers
No doubt the economic impact of the Star Wars brand on tourism and air traffic played a part in the decision. Also, the cost of take-home items from Galaxy’s Edge is fairly high, where the $5.49 souvenir drinks are the easier and more affordable option for fans.
These Coke bottles may not seem like much, but regulations on such a simple thing can leave a bad taste for park visitors. Disney historically does not disclose attendance numbers, but the cities of Anaheim and Orlando will see massive economic returns just from the parks opening their respective Black Spire Outposts.
For example, Visit Anaheim states 24-million visitors came to town just in 2018 (before Galaxy’s Edge opened). That number is expected to double for 2019-2020. The city has a 15% bed tax on hotels. Money doesn’t talk, it screams. When Cars Land opened at the park in 2012, the city of Anaheim reaped $60-million dollars in new revenue over a 5-year period after the opening. Star Wars has a much larger sphere of influence and draw for fans than Cars, so these cities will ensure visitors have the best experience possible. Good business practice dictates it.
In conclusion, good call TSA
So imagine you just dropped a wad of cash at Black Spire Outpost during your dream Disney vacation. The nice lady at the airport security counter checks your ID. She thanks you for spending a ton in their city. Then she sees your souvenir and tells to to pitch it. You can’t take your souvenir drink home on the plane with you. Think that didn’t ruffle some economic vacationing feathers? Think again, my friends.
Kids happy? Parents happy? Wookiees happy? TSA made a smart call here.
Related Article: “Thermal Detonators” Banned From Air Travel by TSA