Because this is frequently asked....

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Flyin' Brian, Feb 4, 2015.

  1. Flyin' Brian

    Flyin' Brian Member

    Jul 29, 2005
    K7C 4K8
    As of March 6th, airlines no longer have individual discretion about allowing instruments in the cabin. I'd strongly suggest that anyone planning to fly also read the link to the TSA guidelines.


    • Most regional jets don't have enough space in an overhead for a guitar in a case.
    • Get there early
    • Airline personnel may not be aware of the new ruling, so bring a copy but don't cop an attitude.
  2. pickaguitar

    pickaguitar 2011 TGP Silver Medalist Silver Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2005
    I like to put my guitars in the coat closet near the front
  3. mge80

    mge80 Member

    Feb 1, 2005
    The Woods of Wisconsin
    #1, it's not necessarily "new". The FAA/DOT had, in the past year or so, reaffirmed their stance on this and now they just put it into the Federal Register and confirmed that these ARE the rules. Every airline I am aware of has been using this policy ever since then. BUT, nothing really changes (and the TSA really has nothing to do with it, they are in the security business, not whether or not you can carry an instrument on board an aircraft). The musical instrument still counts as a "carry on", so if you have a roller bag and a computer bag, you're at your limit. Just like it has always been, you get one carry on and one "personal item". If you have a musical instrument, now you have 3 items, so one has to be checked. Also, it is treated as any other carry on. There has to be room for it. All the yakking I hear on here about being nice to the "stewardess" and your guitar will go into the "closet", yeah..good luck with that. Many planes these days don't have a "closet" (they might if they have a "first class" cabin and then it is hit or miss if you can use it), and if you get stuck on a regional jet, which happens FAR too often, IMO, it's going in the cargo pit regardless.

    Bottom line is I tell people what I have always told them. You had better be prepared for your musical instrument to wind up in the cargo pit. If you do get to carry it on, it's a bonus. But, showing up with a gig bag being certain you're going to be able to carry it on is folly. Pack your guitar as if you were going to have to check it because you just might have to. If you do have to check it and it's in some soft gig bag, don't be surprised if it doesn't survive.

    Your real best bet for actually being able to carry on an instrument, outside of being a professional who does this all the time, knows the ropes and has a rapport with the airline personnel, is to get there early and be one of the first ones to board. That process works different ways with different carriers, so understand their procedure and make it work to your advantage. Being a member of their mileage program is a good start.

    But simply thinking that this "new rule" means the airlines have to allow you to carry on your guitar, no matter what, is'll see.:bonk

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