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Dan_Nailed

Flying with instruments - my guide

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Coming home in a few weeks and in quandry as to my cheap OLP :rolleyes: bought out here. BA have no problem allowing 'guitar' sized instrument as free extra hand luggage. Unfortunately Taipei to Hong Kong leg is Cathay Pacific and online policy is very anti instrument :) So looks like it's coming home in 2 pieces.

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I wish I'd known about this website a few weeks ago. I have just collected a EUB from the Tuscan Luthier Biarnel (www.Biarnel.com), and had lots of worry about how to get it home from Pisa to the UK. To cut a very long story short, I eventually came home with it on Ryan Air, having bought an extra seat for it. BA refused, saying it was too long (I really didn't want to dismantle it). It was in a soft gig bag; was not dismantled - i.e. nearly 5 foot long and more delicate than a bass guitar as you can imagine with the bridge etc., and they didn't make me remove the strings. I have to say that Ryan Air were really very good about it, and Pisa airport security were very understanding also. It's now safe and sound at home, where no doubt I'll break it through my own clumsiness somehow :)

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[quote name='Dave Coxell' post='773503' date='Mar 13 2010, 11:22 AM']I wish I'd known about this website a few weeks ago. I have just collected a EUB from the Tuscan Luthier Biarnel (www.Biarnel.com), and had lots of worry about how to get it home from Pisa to the UK. To cut a very long story short, I eventually came home with it on Ryan Air, having bought an extra seat for it. BA refused, saying it was too long (I really didn't want to dismantle it). It was in a soft gig bag; was not dismantled - i.e. nearly 5 foot long and more delicate than a bass guitar as you can imagine with the bridge etc., and they didn't make me remove the strings. I have to say that Ryan Air were really very good about it, and Pisa airport security were very understanding also. It's now safe and sound at home, where no doubt I'll break it through my own clumsiness somehow :)[/quote]
Welcome to Basschat.
I'd say you did the only thing you could do with your bass and that was to buy it a seat on the plane.
But what a joke BA is increasingly becoming. Given their current wranglings with more strikes looming, it's hardly surprising they're getting a reputation now as "the worlds [i]least[/i] favourite airline"...!
Main thing is you got your EUB home in one piece. Now don't go and bend it! :rolleyes:

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I got a new flight case before going to Greece this weekend.
It was custom made by ABS Flight Cases and is the dog's danglies of flight cases.
thanks ABS

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I've flew to Russia, Azores and Brazil with several instruments, within orchestras and a Big Band. When arriving to Russia, we saw the guys taking the cases off the airplane. We even made a film that served as evidence for insurance. Probably 60% of the instruments where damaged (or their boxes). Luckily I wasn't carrying my bass, I was with the clarinet. But I saw tubas, an accordian, saxofones, etc, all in proper flight cases and with TONS of fragile stickers and the guys where throwing them away off the airplane into the land transporters (no treadmills)!! From that point on, I always carry my bass in a gigbag, with me into the cabin. I never had to buy an extra seat or had to pay extra money. I just put it in my back and never asked anything to anyone. Last month they made me put it in the scale to see its weight, but that was it. I never flew low costs with it. I always try to get a proper airliner when travelling with my precious…
To Brazil we bought some space in a container. At the end it was a whole container for the big band. You know those containers, with the side inclined to fit the airplane cargo area?... A guy just brought the container to us in a forklift thing, in the check-in area in Lisbon airport. We loaded it ourselves. And when we arrived they brought the containers to us to unload. Everything was untouched! That was the only time I flew with my bass in the cargo bay. I have no idea how much the container costed…
But I’m going to check that extra seat option, in case I need it. Seems a good thing to do!

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Brought a Stingray back from America a few weeks ago in its original case and it survived the trip in the hold just fine, it was still in tune let alone damaged in any way (the only scuffs were on the fragile stickers that they put on it when i checked it) but still working on getting a flight case just for my own peace of mind (its a long flight as it is with out worrying about, did it get changed to the correct connecting flight? is it OK ? etc)

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I now have a custom made ABS full flight case for my bass and can whole heartedly recommend it...even Easyjet could only manage a few light scuffs on the exterior.....it may even be bullet proof???

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I have travelled a lot abroad with my guitar with bands whilst touring and have in the main had very few problems at all. Most of the time I was travelling I took the guitar in a custom fitted flight case and a few times they have been damaged or covered in water but never damaged the instrument inside. What I have found is that in the USA they always open the cases and check. After doing so they leave a message inside to let you know it's been security checked and information if you need to contact them about it.

My preference would always be to carry it in a gig back or semi flight case and carry it on board with me into the passenger compartment. But it has always been difficult to get it confirmed in advance that it is ok to take the guitar on board so you take the risk when carrying it in a non flight case that the airline will insist it has to go in the hold. This happened on a tour to the states when the outgoing flight was cool about on-board guitars but on the way out the USA officials said NO!! So we had to put the guitars and basses & Saxes in the hold. Fortunately nothing was damaged but it does make travelling less relaxing.

Strangely I find if you are carrying a guitar or bass in a guitar or bass shaped case the check in people are more likely to let you carry it on board than if it's in a rectangular case.

btw I can recommend flightcase warehouse flight cases.
Jazzyvee

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Hi guys,

Just reviving this thread a little! I have a gig in Barcelona soon flying with Iberia and I'm going to buy a Hiscox hardcase to check-in my jazz bass with. I've heard the recommendations of don't lock the case but do put bubble wrap/old clothes in the case for protection and also to de-tune the neck.

But what about travel insurance incase the bass gets damaged/lost?

I've been looking around and see there are travel insurance for baggage and I've found Tesco to be the cheapest at just £6 for a single trip! Should I go with this? Or should I go with music instrument insurance specialists such as Musicguard? I'm not sure if you can cancel Musicguard after a month? It's really just a one off trip I'm doing so won't Musicguard it annually.

Thanks all! :)

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In July I will be gigging in Belfast.
So I'll be flying from Amsterdam with EasyJet.

Do you guys have any experience with taking the neck off the bass and transport it in two parts in your regular luggage? Edited by OmeDunk

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[quote name='erisu' post='1121114' date='Feb 9 2011, 11:02 AM']Hi guys,

Just reviving this thread a little! I have a gig in Barcelona soon flying with Iberia and I'm going to buy a Hiscox hardcase to check-in my jazz bass with. I've heard the recommendations of don't lock the case but do put bubble wrap/old clothes in the case for protection and also to de-tune the neck.

But what about travel insurance incase the bass gets damaged/lost?

I've been looking around and see there are travel insurance for baggage and I've found Tesco to be the cheapest at just £6 for a single trip! Should I go with this? Or should I go with music instrument insurance specialists such as Musicguard? I'm not sure if you can cancel Musicguard after a month? It's really just a one off trip I'm doing so won't Musicguard it annually.

Thanks all! :)[/quote]


Posted on your other message.

Basically, NO - do not go with Tesco or any non specialist insurer, as they will exclude musical instruments from any cover in any event. Stick to specialists.

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I'm going to fly with Ryanair to London next week, and I've bought my bass an extra seat to have it with me.. and my question is - can I have things like cable, strap, etc in my gig bag to bring into the plane?

The thing is I don't have checked-in baggage, so if I'm not permitted to bring that crap along with me, they gonna stay at home..

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[quote name='Faithless' post='1138656' date='Feb 23 2011, 03:01 PM']I'm going to fly with Ryanair to London next week, and I've bought my bass an extra seat to have it with me.. and my question is - can I have things like cable, strap, etc in my gig bag to bring into the plane?

The thing is I don't have checked-in baggage, so if I'm not permitted to bring that crap along with me, they gonna stay at home..[/quote]
Done it many times over the years. They are not restricted items. Shouldn't be a problem. Edited by SteveK

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[quote name='OmeDunk' post='1132853' date='Feb 18 2011, 10:08 PM']In July I will be gigging in Belfast.
So I'll be flying from Amsterdam with EasyJet.

Do you guys have any experience with taking the neck off the bass and transport it in two parts in your regular luggage?[/quote]

I'm in a similar situation - got a gig in Germany and thinking about taking the neck off my bass and putting it in my suitcase. Good idea? Bad idea? Any input gratefully received.

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Just got home after a spell in London. Flew with British Airways there and back with my backup Ibanez in a gigbag.

Stockholm to London - made sure I was one of the first on the plane. I asked to put it in the cupboard at the front. Crew seemed bewildered, but let me do it. No problems.

London to Stockholm - I was asked at Heathrow to get on the plane first, but was told I would have to have my bass put in the hold. "Basses don't survive in the hold," I said, "but pushchairs do," I added, motioning to the six or so pushchairs also getting on the plane. She said she would do what she could. I go down to the plane where I tell the crew that I have been told to have it put in the hold. I express my concern; the achingly beautiful stewardess puts it in the cupboard. "There, now it won't be smashed in the hold."

I have always considered British Airways to be good. They state on their website that a "guitar-shaped instrument" can go on the plane and not count as part of your hand luggage allowance.

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Hey, Musicians Union have the best advise on these sorts of things ; )

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Nice mate, Morocco is awesome!

I just went on a stunning holiday there.

Good work : )

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Hey guys, a few questions as its my first time flying with a bass as I may be buying a new 1 in the states next week. First of all I am looking at a g and l l2000 tribute and was hoping you guys could recommend me a good hard case to transport it in and help survive the flight but still be usable for taking the bass to college. Also what other tips other than getting a hard case would you recommend to help me make sure the bass survives the flight.

Many thanks

Josh

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[quote name='JoshL' post='1316389' date='Jul 25 2011, 10:08 PM']Hey guys, a few questions as its my first time flying with a bass as I may be buying a new 1 in the states next week. First of all I am looking at a g and l l2000 tribute and was hoping you guys could recommend me a good hard case to transport it in and help survive the flight but still be usable for taking the bass to college. Also what other tips other than getting a hard case would you recommend to help me make sure the bass survives the flight.

Many thanks

Josh[/quote]
You might want to consider a Hiscox LiteFlite.
Watch the first couple or so minutes of this video (it's a guitar case here, but I've done similar with my bass).
[url="http://www.hiscoxcases.com/products_hiscox.htm"]http://www.hiscoxcases.com/products_hiscox.htm[/url]
(Bottom of the page also has some "Advice for Travelling with Stringed Instruments")

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flew with Easyjet to Berlin today. Two basses in Hiscox cases checked into hold, together 19.7 kg
- the fender jazz 5 and the olp mm3. Then my minimark bass amp as hand luggage. No problem at all.

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hey guys,

great thread. as of yet ive always been able to borrow basses when im out where ever i am going to. however soon, it might be a case that my bass is taken along. seeing as its a 79 custom shop definitely could do without it being damaged. will definitely make sure some of the above advice is adhered too but would be grateful if someone could tell me if they've flown using a mono m80 case and how well its withheld it all. thanks!

Chlo x

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Just read this for the first time, great info. Travelling to Holland soon for a project so I'll see what Easy Jets take on this is and report back.

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Well, I flew from Liverpool to Schipol with Easy Jet, then back again with KLM.

Hiscox case, extra bubble wrap around the bass inside to stop vibrations.

No problems what so ever.

That's all.

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