What happens when you take undeveloped film in checked luggage?

You get foggy film.

The effect is much worse when undeveloped film is packed in checked luggage rather than carry on, as the X-ray intensity is much higher. The more times the film goes through the X-ray the more faded/washed out the images will be. If you do need to travel with undeveloped film then be sure to take it in your carry on luggage and ask the airport staff to exclude it from the X-ray. It’s best if you have it in a separate clear plastic bag and ask as you hand over your belongings for scanning.

I completely forgot to do this with my latest films and while one roll was ruined, another had a distinct vintage feel to it that I actually really liked. Here are some of the shots of Cornwall from that roll.


Author: Emma

I'm an Aussie who loves exploring my new homeland of Finland in my day to day life and traveling around Europe in my free time. I'm particularly passionate about solo and eco-friendly travel.

2 thoughts on “What happens when you take undeveloped film in checked luggage?”

  1. Wow, your photos look absolutely amazing, loved every single one of them and the vintage feel aswell, had no idea what x-ray can do to a film, thanks for sharing and have a good day 😀

    1. Thank you so much! It really means a lot to me that you took the time to tell me your thoughts on my photos. It was also my first time using film that had been affected this way and I really loved the unexpected result 🙂

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