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Guitars on Planes Advice...

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Bobert 27 Jan 04 - 04:54 PM
Amos 27 Jan 04 - 05:12 PM
Walking Eagle 27 Jan 04 - 05:13 PM
Bobert 27 Jan 04 - 05:14 PM
JedMarum 27 Jan 04 - 05:48 PM
Bobert 27 Jan 04 - 06:42 PM
greg stephens 27 Jan 04 - 06:46 PM
breezy 27 Jan 04 - 07:22 PM
Gorgeous Gary 27 Jan 04 - 08:06 PM
Walking Eagle 27 Jan 04 - 08:09 PM
Leadfingers 27 Jan 04 - 08:28 PM
Bobert 27 Jan 04 - 09:48 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 27 Jan 04 - 10:44 PM
Steve in Idaho 28 Jan 04 - 11:45 AM
Naemanson 28 Jan 04 - 06:45 PM
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Subject: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 04:54 PM

Now I know there's been a lot on this subject but I don't know how to find these old threads unless I posted to 'em but...

... like what's the deal with the airlines when it comes to guitars?

If this danged snow and slop will let up a little I'm 'sposed to go the the IBC (International Blues Competition) in Mephis tomorrow afternoon. Though I'm not competeing I still want to take my guitar jus' in case I get a chance to jam or even perform on the street...

...So I've tried every which way to find out if Northweat is going to allow me to check it in or if so are they going to charge me more? Other than the guitar, I'm traveling light.

You know that you can't get folks on the line anymore and even on the FAQ at their website, I can't find an answer. I've even emailed 'em but ain't gotten a reply...

Help....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Amos
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 05:12 PM

They'll let you check it, and if it is in a hard case it should suffer no harm, but they may insist on being able to open it for inspection.


My best take.


A


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Walking Eagle
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 05:13 PM

Try a local travel agent Bobzer. They might have something. Try to get it in print though for when you get to the ticket counter.

Good luck and have a great time!


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 05:14 PM

No extra charge? I'm flying coach?

Bobert


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: JedMarum
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 05:48 PM

Most airlines allow one or two checked bags per passenger, for no charge. I am certain this is the policy of Northwest Airlines.

Airlines also insure checked bags, typically for up to a value of $2500. You can purchase insurance for more, if you need it. You can get all that detailed info at the counter - and usually via telephone from the reservations number - though you'll have wait and wade through the computer menus (call late in the evening, you'll probably get through quicker).

It is unlikely you can carry the instrument on-board, but possible. That's up to security and the airline. I wouldn't bet on it happening, though.

Assuming you have a hard shell case, your instrument should be just fine in baggage. I know it's commonly practiced by some to loosen the strings, but Larrivee says DO NOT loosen strings, the instrument is designed to be strongest when it's tuned. All seem to agree that packing the head of the guitar with newspaper (or something) will keep it from being bounced around - and therefore protect it against breaking.

I've carried my instrument frequently in baggage. They always go tuned, heads packed - and I've never had a problem. BUT I would never ship an instrument I couldn't replace. Assume the worst is you'll get the instrument replacement cost - if you can live that, baggage will most likely work out for you!

All the best at IBC. Sounds like a good trip!


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 06:42 PM

Thanks all... I'm feeling much better now. I wasn't planning on taking any of my valuable guitars but my best hardshell case came with my '64 D-18 so it's going...

Thanks again..

Bobert


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: greg stephens
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 06:46 PM

Never mind Memphis Bobert, get on that plane to England. I'll lend you a guitar when you get here.


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: breezy
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 07:22 PM

walk it on and leave it with the stollers if you have to.
I refused to sign the disclaimer to send it to the hold.


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Gorgeous Gary
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 08:06 PM

My experience is that it's the same old crapshoot it was before 9/11. Depending on how full the flight is, when you board, what mood the flight attendants are in, what mood security or the ticket agents are, and how busy the ticket counters and security are, you may or may not be able to carry the guitar on.

I flew Delta to Atlanta earlier this month. Going down, I was able to carry my guitar (in hardshell case) on board and put it in the overhead compartment. Coming back there wasn't room and I had to gate check it, but they brought it back to me at the jetway.

OTOH, I had flights last year where they made me gate check it, then sent it through baggage claim at my destination. And a couple times the ticket agent made my fiance check her guitar at the counter.

For the record, I use a standard hard case, pack a sweatshirt or light jacket around and under the neck, and can replace the guitar for a couple hundred bucks if need be (although it's also insured on my home policy).

-- Gary


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Walking Eagle
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 08:09 PM

Get there reeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaallllllll early!


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Leadfingers
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 08:28 PM

I have done the transatlantic bit twice with a Martin in a Calton case in the hold with NO problems. If its in a HARD case you ought to be OK But Insurance is obviously a neccessity.


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Bobert
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 09:48 PM

Greg:

Believe me. We are comin'. Just a matter of time and finances but we're comin'...

Hey to Kate...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 27 Jan 04 - 10:44 PM

my advice as a person who has carried my guitar on many times...don't ask anybody anything! go to check-in, get your pass and check your luggage, don't ask about your git just take it with you to the gate. take all the junk out of your case pocket and put it in your checked luggage so there's nothing in the case but your guitar. most of the times i've been questioned at the x-ray is when they see something in the pocket they don't recognize. if it's just a guitar they'll pass you thru. once you've got it at the gate, worst case is they make you gatecheck it. that's better than sending it thru baggage. and even if the gate attendant gives you a check ticket and tells you to leave it with the strollers don't leave it there unless there's someone there to take it from you. if not, just carry it on ,put it in the rack and don't say a word. the problem with asking everybody stuff is that there isn't a real policy on this, nobody really knows what to do, and the easiest thing for them to do when questioned is to cover their ass by telling you no, we can't do that. if you don't ask they have to aggressively target you and my experience is that they would rather not do that. unless, of course, you get a psycho control freak in your way. never argue until they actually want to take it out of your hands. i've only had to surrender my guitar once in probably 100 flights.


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 28 Jan 04 - 11:45 AM

Me too - I carry it as my carry on bag. I'm entitled to one so that's my one. As I board I ask the attendents to put it in their clothing hold and they do. We had an old thread about this Bobert right after 9/11 and I don't know where it is either - but nothing has changed.

My case has bunches of military stickers on it so maybe that is why I've never been bumped about checking it -

Have fun -

Steve


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Subject: RE: Guitars on Planes Advice...
From: Naemanson
Date: 28 Jan 04 - 06:45 PM

I agree with the last two people. I never ask I never mention it. The only airlines that refused to let me carry my guitar on to the plane was QANTAS ant they covered the case with so many fragile stickers it was hard to make out what the case looked like.

One word of warning, you want to be the first on the plane so you have enough room in the overhead compartment.


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