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The 8 Best TSA-Approved Multi-Tools for Hassle-Free Travel

Best TSA Approved Multi Tool 0 Hero

While we can appreciate that the TSA is in place to ensure everyone can travel in safety and security, they can also be the bane of our existence — from an everyday carry perspective, that is. The reasoning for this is pretty straightforward: the TSA has a list of travel-banned gear that typically encompasses that which an EDC enthusiast might normally carry. And while the greater reason for this is respectable and desirable, it means bringing things like knives or your typical multi-tool is out of the question when flying.

Fortunately, there are quite a few EDC brands and craftsmen who are keen to build pocket gear that meets the TSA’s fairly rigorous standards. And that’s excellent news for the rest of us, as it means there are airplane-ready options for most of the things we need — even tools used for cutting (not knives, per se, but things that have an edge sharp enough to cut through twine or tape. Which is exactly why we put together this collection. These are the best travel-friendly, TSA-approved multi-tools for all your jet-setting adventures.

Best TSA-Approved Multi-Tools

What to Look for

Material: Materials like stainless steel and titanium are going to be the ones to look out for here. Both are very tough and durable, with the former having great scratch-resistant properties and the latter being significantly more lightweight.

Size: If you’re going to be carrying anything in your pockets, you’ll want them to be somewhat diminutive in size. The options below are all rather small, be it in total volume or slimness (e.g., credit card multi-tools that fit into your wallet).

Tools: Like any multi-tool, the number of tools, along with the type of tools offered, is of most importance to your purchase-making decision. If you value drivers and wrenches, certain TSA-approved options won’t be of value to you. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something bare and simple, then you probably won’t need any of the well-equipped options.

Keyrings: The benefit of many TSA-approved multi-tools is the addition of a keyring. This adds a quality of fun to your carry as well as a convenience factor to prevent you from losing your unit.

TSA Regulations on multi-tools

When it comes to airline travel, the TSA has strict prohibitions on knives of any size, so you won’t be able to bring any multi-tools with blades in your carry-on or pockets. As for scissors, they are allowed but must be less than 4″ in length. As a rule of thumb, sharp-edged objects are what the TSA is looking out for, which is why the following options won’t have many of them.

*TSA rules are constantly changing, and ultimately it’s up to the judgement of the TSA agents during your travel

Kershaw PT-1 Keychain Multi-Tool

  • Cheap
  • Glass-filled nylon grip
  • Compact
  • Only 3 tools

Best Budget Multi-Tool: While an inconspicuous keychain multi-tool can certainly be desirable for some, others prefer their tools — no matter how small — to look like tools. If you fall into that category, then the Kershaw PT-1 is the TSA-friendly multi-tool for you. It boasts functionality that ranges from a bottle opener, to a pry bar, to a flathead screwdriver, as well as a box opener. It’s built from sturdy 8Cr13MoV stainless steel and has a glass-filled nylon grip.

Material: Stainless Steel & Glass-Filled Nylon
Size: 2.75″
No. of Tools: 3+

Gerber Shard Keychain Multi-Tool

  • Fits over 7 tools in small space
  • Excellent build quality
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight
  • N/A

Best Compact Multi-Tool: Made from a single piece of titanium-coated stainless steel, this remarkably small keychain multi-tool packs a wallop — boasting 7+ functions in less than 3 inches. Those functions include a pry bar, dual screwdriver tips, wire stripper, bottle opener, and a box opener. And, aside from its excellent build quality and functionality, it also comes with a limited lifetime warranty, so you can be certain it’s a good investment — however inexpensive it might be.

Material: Titanium Nitride-Coated Stainless Steel
Size: 2.8″
No. of Tools: 7+

SWISS+TECH Micro-Max Multi-Tool

Swiss Tech Max Micro
  • Hooks onto keyring
  • Incredibly compact
  • Folds an array of drivers and hex wrenches
  • Transforms into a ruler
  • Not a lot of tool versatility

Best for the Handyman: If you’re an everyday Mr. Fix-It, Swiss+Tech’s Micro-Max is a fantastic multi-tool to carry on your person so that you’re never without some sort of utility. Sporting a whopping 19 tools inside of its 1.875″ x 1.3″ frame, this unit hooks onto your keyring and folds out to become an array of drivers, hex wrenches, and measuring devices in the form of a 2-inch ruler and ruler extensions. There are also pliers, a nail file, a wire cutter/stripper/crimper, a hand drill, and a bottle opener built in. Weighing just over 3oz, the Micro-Max fits into your pocket so that you won’t even notice it’s there, and better yet, you won’t have to forego your favorite multi-tool when traveling across the country.

Material: Stainless Steel
Size: 1.875″ x 1.3″
No. of Tools: 19+

SOG MacV Multi-Tool

  • 12+ tools
  • Versatile array of tools
  • Slim
  • Fantastic construction
  • Affordable
  • N/A

Best Overall: What’s especially interesting about the SOG MacV multi-tool isn’t that it’s under 3 inches in length or its black-finished 3Cr13 stainless steel construction, or even that it incorporates 12+ tools into its functionality. What’s the most enticing thing about this device is that they managed to pack all of those features into a tool that’s shaped to look like the original skull icon from the MACV SOG Special Forces group that operated during the Vietnam War. And its unique form certainly makes it stand out from the rest of the TSA-compliant travel-friendly multi-tools.

Material: Stainless Steel
Size: 2.5″ x 1.5″
No. of Tools: 12+

Griffin Pocket Tool

Griffin Titanium Pocket Tool
  • Lightweight
  • Compact
  • Several size options
  • Hooks onto keys
  • Pricey

Best Titanium Multi-Tool: The only tool on our list that’s available in a number of different sizes, materials, and finishes, the Griffin Pocket tool is one of the best keychain-sized single-piece multi-tools around. The smallest version measures up at just 3 inches in length — and 4.2 inches for the longest version. It also packs up to 15 different tools into its form, including a ruler, stepped hex wrenches, drivers, pry bar/nail puller, bottle opener, box cutter, and a bunch more. The largest version is also available in both metric and imperial measurements for an added bit of versatility. Add to that a titanium construction and this thing is even more lightweight than its stainless steel counterparts.

Material: Titanium
Size: 3″ to 4.3″
No. of Tools: 9 to 15

Lever Gear Toolcard Pro

  • Fits into wallet with ease
  • Versatile
  • Over 40 tools
  • Affordable
  • Markings may wear off over time

Best Wallet Multi-Tool: Made from 420 stainless steel and measuring up at about the same size as a credit card, this little pocket wonder from Lever Gear boasts more built-in functions than any other on our list — boasting a whopping 40 in total. The wealth of functions includes different wrench sizes, driver tips, a scraper/box opener, a bottle opener, and so much more. It also weighs just one ounce, so you can easily slip it into your wallet without too much fuss, taking it with you literally anywhere you might travel.

Material: Stainless Steel
Size: 3.35″ x 2.79″
No. of Tools: 40+

Tactica M100 Multi-Tool

  • Over 20 functions
  • Composite exterior super lightweight
  • Stylish
  • Driver tip has tendency to get stuck for a moment

Best Upgrade: While this might look like a keychain carabiner at first glance, it’s actually one of the most impressive non-folding pocket multi-tools we’ve ever come across. For starters, it features a sturdy stainless steel core that’s wrapped in a composite exterior — which is 40% lighter than titanium but remarkably strong — offering added durability, scratch resistance, and just the right touch of style. It also boasts over 20 built-in functions that range from a box opener to stepped hex wrenches, a hex bit driver socket (with bits included), and more. There’s even a bottle opener for when your work is all done.

Material: Stainless Steel Core With Composite Exterior
Size: 3.15″ x 1.57″
No. of Tools: 20+

The James Brand Halifax Keychain Multi-Tool

  • Two color options
  • Super lightweigh titanium construction
  • Compact
  • Pricey for not a lot of tools

Most Stylish Multi-Tool: Possibly the most beautiful keychain multi-tool ever built, The James Brand’s Halifax is a perfect balance of form and function. Crafted from ultralight and insanely sturdy billet titanium, the tool measures up at just under 3 inches in length, but still manages to have a bottle opener, pry bar, screwdriver, box opener, and scraper functionality. It’s also finished in black Cerakote for extra durability and stylishness. And, of course, it is entirely TSA-compliant.

Material: Billet Titanium
Size: 2.875″ x 0.625″
No. of Tools: 5+

The Best Full Sized Multi-Tools For EDC

Best Multi Tools for EDC 00 Hero

If you’re looking for a full-sized, daily tool for once you’re back to the grind (and on the ground), then dive into our guide to the best multi-tools for everyday carry.