Man holding metal detector and shovel

What To Know Before You Vacation With Your Metal Detector

By Jenna Busch


If you want to bring a metal detector on vacation, there are some crucial rules that you cannot ignore, or you could find yourself injured or in trouble with the law.
If you take a metal detector on vacation, you'll have to check
it on your flight. The TSA recommends you check with your airline and get contact information for local authorities.
You usually need permission to use a metal detector. Laws vary widely, and national parks in the U.S., like Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, do not allow metal detecting.
For private property, you must get written permission from the owner. Also make sure you're not on a protected site or one with archaeological significance.
While metal detecting, if you uncover something that could have historical or cultural significance, report it to a
local historian and
do not move the item.
Sometimes, particularly on battlefield sites, you may come across unexploded ammo, grenades, or bombs. If you suspect it might be live, don't touch it and call the authorities.
There can also be laws about what you discover. For instance, in the U.K., you must report finds, and if they're declared "treasure," they are considered Crown property.