Anyone living outside our borders knows how difficult it is to go without ham or cold cuts for an extended period of time, which is why many try to take them back with them in their suitcase when returning to their home country.
If you find yourself in this situation and are wondering if you can bring Spanish cold cuts to the United States, the answer is a definite NO, and at Enrique Tomás, we will explain why.
Why can't you bring cold cuts to the United States?
If you've ever wondered if you can bring cold cuts to the USA, we have some bad news for you: the law that regulates the entry of meat and animal products into the USA is very strict, and security checks are very thorough. It's important to know that it is strictly prohibited to carry meat in your carry-on or checked luggage. The US Embassy in Spain and Andorra, aware of the passion of our fellow countrymen for bringing Iberian ham, chorizo, and salchichón everywhere, clearly states that meat is not allowed, even for personal consumption.
You won't be able to transport products like ham or cans of fabada. However, you can travel with turron or cured cheese to ease your nostalgia, as long as their weight does not exceed five kilos. We understand it's not a great consolation, but it's better than nothing.
However, sometimes, between individuals and not between companies, vacuum-packed and sliced ham is sent, as it's easier to ship. Due to proper packaging and sealing, US authorities sometimes allow its entry, but there is always a risk that should be considered before deciding.
What foods can you bring to the United States by plane?
As we've already mentioned, you cannot travel with ham, chorizo, salchichón, or lomo. However, there are other products from our country that you can take across US borders, such as cheese.
Typical Christmas sweets, such as turron or polvorones, can also enter the country, as well as olive oil as long as you carry it in your checked luggage.
Typical Christmas Sweets in Spain
Which countries can you bring ham or cold cuts to?
One of the advantages of being part of the European Union is that within its borders, you can bring ham or cold cuts in your suitcase, as long as they are properly vacuum-sealed. You can carry them in both your carry-on and checked luggage, but in either case, they must not exceed the airline's regulations regarding weight and size of items.
As for non-EU countries, it will depend on the destination. The regulations in Muslim countries are very strict regarding pork products, while Latin American countries like Argentina or Brazil allow traveling with meat-based foods.
Regardless of the country you plan to travel to, keep in mind that the rules for importing food are determined by the individual states. If you are traveling within the European Union, there are generally no issues. However, if you plan to leave the common market, it's crucial to research the specific regulations of the destination country. As a useful tip, we recommend visiting the website of the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Embassy in Spain of your destination country. If you can't find the information you need, don't hesitate to contact them to clarify your doubts and travel with peace of mind.
You'll discover how good everything tastes when you arrive at your destination.