The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #21440   Message #3440042
Posted By: Genie
21-Nov-12 - 05:16 PM
Thread Name: Baby Taylor Guitar and Airline Travel
Subject: RE: Baby Taylor Guitar and Airline Travel
I've traveled 3 round trip flights, on Southwest Airlines, with a 3/4 size guitar stored in the overhead compartment in a gig bag. (One flight was with a 3/4 size Ibanez and the other two with a Martin LXI.)
The ticket counter people never batted an eye when I did not check my guitar (which was strapped to my back in plain sight), nor did the attendants at the gate where my flights originated.   The one time I did have a hassle, though, was when I was checking in for a connecting flight in Denver.   One of the attendants at that gate was being very insistent that I had to check the guitar, because it was longer than their carry-on baggage specs - and that the airline had no responsibility for handling it carefully.    I had to plead, beg, etc., and keep pointing out that the guitar took up no more space than a standard rectangular carry-on suitcase, to get her to finally leave it up to the judgment of the guy who was taking our boarding passes.   Probably what 'won' the argument was my pointing out that about 25% of the other passengers also had carry-ons that would not fit in their little sizing box. (Many carry-ons are deeper than spec, even if their width and length are within limits.)

I did succeed, all 6 times, in carrying my 3/4 size guitar onboard, but it is scary that the airline's policy can change from one airport to another or employee to another, such that you can't find out beforehand whether you're going to have to check your instrument or not.