Are Machetes Illegal? Guide to Machete Laws and Regulations

Owning a Machete

Machetes are classified as agricultural tools by United States law.  Unlike stabbing knives and swords, which are classified as weapons, machetes have the distinction of usually being only sharpened on one side of the blade. Despite how they are typically portrayed in movies, there is really very little regulation of machetes, and nobody should fear owning one.

Shipping Machetes

When sending  a machete through the mail, make sure any points are well covered and that no movement is discernible in your package. We usually try to use descriptions like “edge tools” or “hewing tools” when shipping to prevent undo delays caused by inspections.

For machetes, the Harmonized Code is 8201.40.0000 for Axes, bill hooks, and similar hewing tools, including machetes. These items are duty free when importing into the US. Non-wood handles are often less troublesome in terms of clearing customs than wood handles, which can harbor invasive species.

Sheaths are classified under Harmonized Code 4202.02.0000 and have duties into the US between 4.5 and 7% depending on the sheath material. It pays to ship the sheath as part of the machete as in “machete and sheath” to save on tariffs.

Traveling with Machetes

Machetes can be bought in foreign countries and brought to the US without much difficulty, again due to their agricultural tool classification; however, the machete must be placed in the checked luggage and cannot be carried-on. Be sure to check international laws when traveling outside of the United States with your machete, as other countries may have different restrictions.

More Machete Information

Read our other valuable articles on the make, use and care of machetes:

Get your machete today!

Shop Machetes