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Document to carry instruments on Planes

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Steve Latimer 12 Sep 03 - 08:42 AM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Sep 03 - 08:54 AM
Ella who is Sooze 12 Sep 03 - 09:03 AM
Arbuthnot 12 Sep 03 - 05:59 PM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Sep 03 - 06:31 PM
Alaska Mike 12 Sep 03 - 07:40 PM
Rapparee 12 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Sep 03 - 08:36 PM
LadyJean 12 Sep 03 - 09:22 PM
The Fooles Troupe 13 Sep 03 - 01:52 AM
Alaska Mike 13 Sep 03 - 02:32 AM
GUEST 14 Sep 03 - 03:09 AM
pavane 14 Sep 03 - 06:18 AM
GUEST 16 Sep 03 - 12:45 PM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Sep 03 - 03:24 PM
Naemanson 16 Sep 03 - 09:36 PM
Folkie 17 Sep 03 - 08:33 AM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Sep 03 - 08:53 AM
Big Mick 17 Sep 03 - 09:11 AM
Seamus Kennedy 17 Sep 03 - 08:14 PM
GUEST 18 Sep 03 - 01:49 PM
wysiwyg 25 Oct 03 - 04:45 PM
GUEST,alecville@utvinternet.com 25 Oct 03 - 05:19 PM
Marion 26 Oct 03 - 02:26 PM
Ebbie 26 Oct 03 - 03:18 PM
Dave Bryant 27 Oct 03 - 12:39 PM
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Subject: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Steve Latimer
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 08:42 AM

Apparently since 9/11 it has been a real problem to carry instruments on airplanes. Many airlines have wanted them checked in with normal baggage. This has led to lost and broken instruments. This document should be printed and taken to the airport if you wish to fly wiyh your instrument.

Carry On Document


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 08:54 AM

That may apply to domestic flights in the USA, but be warned. Size restrictions on hand luggage on airlines flying from UK airports mean that, if they are enforced (which they aren't always), it's forbidden to carry anything larger than a ukelele as hand luggage.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Ella who is Sooze
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 09:03 AM

It's interesting news though... I travel alot with my instruments...

Last time I had to empty my handbad contents into my bodhran bag - put my wooden flute in there too just to get around it all... Sometimes UK flights are very understanding and sometimes they are a bit more insistant. (As a result I carried on a rather round handbag which had plenty of room in the over head locker!)

My friend always solves this as his guitar is always his overnight/week away bag as well as the guitar carrier.

I've insisted as the hold of planes can have an adverse reaction to instruments - not only breaking. But there are temperature differences to worry about too. All a bit concerning. Especially when most people tend to invest extra into their instruments - and also they are rather attached to them!

But thanks Steve - this was very interesting!


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Arbuthnot
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 05:59 PM

In my capacity as a courier (glorified van driver) I have to meet people at the London airports for consular services (visas etc.) , so I see a lot of people coming off aeroplanes. I've made a point of asking lately, if I see someone with a guitar, how they've transported it. The general concensus is that it is easier to get a guitar into the cabin when travelling from west to east - the GB side are worried that people might use the strings as garottes! Most of the people I've asked are pros, and they've booked a seat for the instruments, but the others have all reported hassles - usually demonstating that the case is locked, and handing the key over for the duration of the flight.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 06:31 PM

The rules in UK airports are fairly insistant that hand luggage cannot be more than stated dimensions - and the dimensions are not sufficient to allow a guitar, or even a mandolin or fiddle.

Of course the rules aren't always insisted on. But more often than not they are.

Whatever you do, never make any jokes about fiddle cases and Tommy Guns, as in the gangster movies. And there's no such animal as a bouzouki, which to people who don't know about folk-music sounds too much like a joke about rocket launchers - it's "a kind of guitar".

The strange thing is, there's no problem, in taming a container of highly inflammable liquid manufactured in such a way that it can be used as a lethal weapon, especially when broken, so long as it's a bottle of spirits bought in duty free. Whereas a nailfile...


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Alaska Mike
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 07:40 PM

My advice: Contact the airlines ahead of time, carry written documetation from them with you when you board, and make sure your instrument is in the best hard shell, steel cage case you can buy, because they're going to make you put it in the hold anyway. Try flying in Alaska sometimes. Many of my airplane flights are on 2 passenger float planes skimming over glaciers and frozen lakes.

Best wishes, Mike


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 08:27 PM

Actually, Mike, it doesn't sound at all bad, especially if the plane has to make a forced landing and you get to use all of the "camping gear" they have to carry.

In the wilderness, sitting around the campfire, playing your guitar and singing songs as the velvet curtain of night falls. Off in the distance the howl of the wolf as the moon rises and sheds its pearly luminescence o'er the crusted snow, and you crawl into your warm and cozy sleeping bag....

Makes you want to crash just to do it, don't it?

(What makes the above interesting, folks, is that every plane flying in Alaska must, by federal law, carry survival gear and FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION. In short, you can't carry a gun aboard, but you have to have one already there. Ain't official paranoia grand?)


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 08:36 PM

Is that really paranoia? Myself, in general I wouldn't feel that worried about the pilot on a plane having a gun. But I would be worried about any of the fellow-passengers having one.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: LadyJean
Date: 12 Sep 03 - 09:22 PM

You might want to check out my thread of last summer, Subversive Cheese. They X-Ray all checked luggage, now, just in case you put some plastic explosive in your string base.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 13 Sep 03 - 01:52 AM

Well Rapaire,

Reminds me of the old joke that first surfaced in the days of carrying bombs on planes...

Statistically, there is far less chance of there being TWO bombs, so it's safer to carry one with you...

somehow these days, I think one should try that joke at an airport these, days, unless you ENJOy the resultant treatment...

Robin


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Alaska Mike
Date: 13 Sep 03 - 02:32 AM

Hey Rapaire, you do know a lot about our flight regulations up here. But, NO it does not make me want to crash. I love camping in the Alaskan wilderness, hooking a 12 pound Silver Salmon on a Coho Fly and watching him dance across the surface of a crystal clear stream. I have enjoyed istening to the ravens yodeling in the Spruce trees early in the morning while a 1600 lb Bull Moose splashes his way across a mist shrouded alpine lake. I have stayed up all night long trying to decide which of 14 banjo pickers can play "Dueling Banjos" faster than any other, while simultaneously trying to finish off the case and a half of homemade beer that belongs to the poor banjo player who quit early and went to bed. But I cannot think of a single good thing that would come of crashing in a small plane in the back country and wondering if the pilot believes in following ALL of the goofy rules that the FAA comes up with.

I plan on bringing my Martin guitar down to the Getaway packed in its bright yellow Calton flight case. I will check the guitar along with my other luggage and not worry a bit. Life is too short to fill it with worry. Enjoy.

Mike


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Sep 03 - 03:09 AM


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: pavane
Date: 14 Sep 03 - 06:18 AM

They did look puzzled when my Melodeon went through the Xray. I had to open the box to show them what it was. Luckily they didn't need a demo.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Sep 03 - 12:45 PM


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Sep 03 - 03:24 PM

"They did look puzzled when my Melodeon went through the Xray."

Stick that on a T-shirt!


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Sep 03 - 09:36 PM

I love the story of the pilot who had to surrender his pocket knife to security and then found a fire axe on the wall behind his seat.

Last June I flew from New Jersey to Guam carrying a small back pack and my guitar as carry on luggage. I didn't have any trouble except that there was no room in the overhead bin on the flight from Hawaii to Guam and the crew had to store it in the closet in first class. So, my guitar flew first class while I had to fly coach.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Folkie
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 08:33 AM

I recently carried a fiddle as hand luggage from UK to Australia and no questions were asked.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 08:53 AM

You were lucky, Folkie. I've done the same on a flight from Ireland - the check-in man in Dublin asked for a tune. But if he'd been going strictly by the rules the fiddle in its case was a few inches over the permitted length for hand luggage, up on a notice behind his head.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Big Mick
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 09:11 AM

The cost is dear, but the best solution (as stated by Alaska Mike) is a Calton case. I invested in one after losing a beloved guitar to the gorilla's at the airport.

I am an AFM member, but the size of a guitar makes that a moot point.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 17 Sep 03 - 08:14 PM

I've said this before and I'll say it again.Like Alaska Mike and Big Mick, invest in a Calton case, and check the instrument.
My guitar in its Calton case simply will not fit in the overhead.
They take it from me, and hand carry it to the cargo hold, which is the same as checking it anyway.
I don't mean fiddles, mandolins or banjos, by the way.
Generally, they'll all fit in the overhead
Not every TSA inspector is versed in the latest updates, and if you argue, or cause a scene (however much in the right you are) they'll bounce your ass off the flight, and there could be legal ramifications.
Alaska Mike, I'd recognize that yella Calton anywhere.

Seamus
.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Sep 03 - 01:49 PM

Story and advice and story.

Sheffield City Morris went to Barcelona for a huge festival at the same time as the Olympics. We had a corporate image of matching shirts with a logo and as we stepped off the plane we were met with an Olympic meeter and greeter who asked if we wanted to wait for our luggage or go straight to the Olympic Village where it would be transported to us. As a horse's head, trombone and sundry other bits and pieces came down the luggage chute he finally plucked up enough courage to ask what sort of competition we were in!!

Advice. The staff will take it on board as "hand luggage" for you - keep it with them and hand it back as you step off the plane. A good argument is value - they have no desire to allow a Martin guitar or similar to be broken. Believe you me, Yehudi Menuhin took his fiddle on as hand-luggage (or his minder did) and did not trust his Stradivarius to the vagaries of luggage handlers.

At Sidmouth this year Altan came from New York with luggage in Dublin. All of them carried their instruments - except the bozouki player who wished he had!!

Dave


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: wysiwyg
Date: 25 Oct 03 - 04:45 PM

Actually, handing the case to them at the gate and having it stowed below at that time is NOT the same as checking it with baggage at the ticket counter. For one thing, it will actually get put on the plane you are getting on, not get mixed up among all the trains of carts going around the airport, and it will be put in as one of the last tiems stowed, not tossed about by handler eager to fill the back of the plane first (crunch, crunch, as other items land on top of it), and MOST important (I think) is that you get it handed back to you at the gate when you land.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: GUEST,alecville@utvinternet.com
Date: 25 Oct 03 - 05:19 PM

Last time I flew EasyJet with my Tubaphone 5-string banjo, some a----ole on the tarmac with a semi-uniform said it had to go in the 'hold' where...'it would be quite safe..' I could not demer - I swore and asked him if he would be there at the other end......to see that it arived OK. I spoke to head of cabin crew in flight - at Belfast, she held all the passengers while she got my banjo from the hold and put it on the front seat!!! (for which I kissed her...) She also told me THAT EASY JET INTERNAL REGULATIONS HAD NOW BEEN CHANGED SO THAT STRINGED INSTRUMENTS COULD BE CARRIED IN THE CABIN... She said that the original intent of the ban was that they thought that musicians might garrot the cabin crew with their banjo, fiddle, guitar strings. She was obviously a human being.... You ought to be able to use the overhead unless you have a double bass........... Alec Somerville, Donegal, Ireland


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Marion
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 02:26 PM

A strategy to consider when flying with a fiddle:

A fiddle case is a bit longer than the normal dimensions allowed, but the fiddle itself isn't. So stuff a pillowcase or cloth bag in your pocket, so if you get someone who's really insistent on the rules, you can resort to carrying the fiddle in a bag and letting them check the case. It's not a perfect solution, because then you'll have to figure out how to keep it safe in the overhead without a case (maybe you can sweet talk them into giving you a pillow and blanket early), but my suspicion is that it's better than putting the fiddle in with cargo.

Marion


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 03:18 PM

I've mentioned it somewhere else before but- a couple of years ago Alaska Airlines, the only major line we have in Juneau, had been making a fuss about anyone carrying on an instrument. Then one day, our local concertmeister, Steve Tada, was told he had to check his violin. After much ado, the airline prevailed, the violin was taken from him and put in the hold, and Steve came home livid. He promptly wrote letters to everyone in power that he knew, including our governor at the time, Tony Knowles. Tony went to bat for him- and the upshot is that yes, you can now carry on any instrument smaller than a bass or a tuba.

I've carried on only a mandolin, given me by my brother before he died. He never had a case for it, just carried it in a bag and that's how it traveled to Juneau. The flight attendants were extremely careful with it- even rescued it from the overhead when someone else was going to put his own things in.


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Subject: RE: Document to carry instruments on Planes
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 12:39 PM

I've managed to get my small "Art & Lutherie" guitar on BA flights as hand baggage with no trouble, but it fits in a 3/4 case. The only thing that did cause a slight hiccup, was that when they x-rayed it they thought it had a large fish-hook type object in it - it was in fact the cable to the transducer which has a loop in it.

I once flew into Stanstead with my Yamaha as hold baggage. It had been checked in as FRAGILE - and had a special label on it. In spite of that, it was loaded onto the conveyor with all the other luggage - neck first, so that when it went onto the carousel it slid down a sleep shute and hit the stop at the bottom with a bang. Thank God it was in a Hixcock's case !


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