Freezing in the cargo hold?

I’ve taken wine on flights of up to 4hrs in duration. I’m going on a 10hr flight this week and wondering if that’s long enough that no matter how insulated by clothes and other luggage a bottle is, will it get cold enough to freeze in the cargo hold?

Remember, they put animals down there. It’s pressurized and heated, even if not always to cabin temperatures. If it weren’t, they’d have all sorts of things freezing and leaking – a big mess.

I’ve carried many bottles of wine and other liquids (e.g., contact lens solutions, vinegar) from Europe (7-9 hours westbound) and Turkey (11 hours westbound) over a 35 year span without a problem.

No freezing worries.

Cool, I didn’t know they kept it somewhat heated when there were no animals down there, but it makes sense. Thanks guys.

I don’t think they heat the hold just for animals. If they didn’t heat it, I’d guess they’d have also sorts of condensation and icing issues (imagine taking off from a hot, humid airport with all that humidity in the hold cooling down to subfreezing temps) in addition to bursting liquids. And it would make it harder to control the temperature of the passenger cabin. Moreover, there’s an abundant source of free heat in the engines.

When was the last time your luggage felt freezing cold upon arrival? Tempr in the cargo hold do not get down enough to freeze anything.

I’ve had some come out quite cool, but there’s a big difference between 40F/5C or 50F/10C and freezing!


It’s very stressful and uncomfortable for animals to fly as cargo. If possible, try to book them in the passenger compartment, even if it requires flying United.

I wasn’t suggesting it was nice. Just that it was pressurized and well above freezing. Safe for animals > ergo safe for wine.

Carried wine many times and no issue with freezing.