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Starfield has a lot – and I mean a LOT – you can do in it. It’s no Star Citizen as far as activities or immersion, but it does provide a lot of room for the player to explore who they want to be in the ‘verse.. Which includes becoming a smuggler of illicit goods.

You may have, at some point in your adventuring, grabbed something highlighted as contraband. This could be drugs, alien tech, or more.

The problem is if you pick it up and forget you have it, and then fly to a major populated sector, you’ll end up getting pulled over by space cops and taken to space jail.

If you want to avoid that, there is really only one effective way to do so while still being able to smuggle contraband in Starfield: Shielded cargo holds.

Shielded cargo holds allow you to have a solid chance to evade a scanner’s notice (assuming you have a lot of shielded cargo space + not a lot of contraband).

How to get shielded cargo holds in Starfield

You can equip your ship with shielded cargo holds by heading to Porrima III (in the Porrima system, obviously) and landing at The Red Mile. There is a guy just inside called Lon Anderson who is the ship technician for the place, and he sells shielded cargo holds.

You can also get some from Jasmine in the Crimson Fleet (assuming you joined), but if you’d rather play a more gray-area good guy than an outright bad guy, The Red Mile is your ticket.

Note that shielded cargo holds have less available cargo space than their non-shielded counterparts, and are also more expensive.

There are 2 other things to consider investing in: The Deception skill allows you to have a small chance of not getting scanned when appearing in a system, and you can also employ a scan jammer, which also isn’t 100% effective.. However, these can be worth using in combination with shielded cargo holds, especially if you’ve got a lot of smuggled cargo (although it may be simpler to offload some illicit cargo at a small out-of-the-way home base and sell it piecemeal given you can easily deplete a Trade Authority vendor’s credits with just a handful of illicit goods).

What can you smuggle in Starfield?

Unfortunately, as of right now, there isn’t much to smuggle; you’ll basically just end up randomly picking up some loot in a seedy spot you’re in, but at least now you can sell it at any Trade Authority vendor (that’s right, Trade Authority will buy literally anything). I’m sure modders will fix this in short order, however.

Just make sure that when you pick it up you actually store it in your ship; if you have it in your personal inventory you’ll still get nabbed by the cops!