Advice on flying with firearms

This is a discussion on Advice on flying with firearms within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I will be flying this week and would like any advice on flying with a firearm from people that have done it. I have a ...

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Thread: Advice on flying with firearms

  1. #1
    New Member Array mi_sledhead's Avatar
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    Advice on flying with firearms

    I will be flying this week and would like any advice on flying with a firearm from people that have done it. I have a feeling like this is going to be a hassle. Just taking my ccw on a business trip to N.C. Thanks

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  3. #2
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    Array Captain Crunch's Avatar
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    You can start with the TSA's web site.

    TSA | Transportation Security Administration | U.S. Department of Homeland Security

    You should also do a forum

    We've covered this topic many, many times.

    Check your air carrier's web site for their firearms policy.


    When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
    And go to your God like a soldier.

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    Member Array carry for protection's Avatar
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    I just flew American Airlines without any hassle. I went to the desk, gave them my checked bag mentioned that "I am traveling with an unloaded and locked firearm". He asked again if it was unloaded. He then slipped a paper inside my bag noting the firearm and sent it thru the x-ray/scan machine. No problems, No marks outside the bag making it fair game for tampering. No one blinked or made a scene.

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    Member Array spydad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Crunch View Post
    You can start with the TSA's web site.

    TSA | Transportation Security Administration | U.S. Department of Homeland Security

    You should also do a forum

    We've covered this topic many, many times.

    Check your air carrier's web site for their firearms policy.
    +1.

  6. #5
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    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    What airline?
    If you 'should' have any difficulties (I don't think you should), have a copy of the TSA Rules (as noted above) and always ask for a supervisor if a you believe the TSA individual assisting you seems unsure of anything...OMO

    Stay armed...follow the rules...stay safe!
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  7. #6
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    Array Jeff F's Avatar
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    Go to the web site of the particular airline your flying and look for their FAQ on flying with a firearm. Their rules will be to at least TSA minimuim, but also may exceed TSA rules. Follow the airlines rules on flying with a weapon to the letter and you will have no problems.
    "Those who would give up essential liberties for a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety" -Benjamin Franklin-
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    Member Array socuban's Avatar
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    I haven't done it. I did read some horror stories about issues with connecting flights in non gun friendly states (read NJ/NY et al). I believe guns were confiscated and the owners hassled.

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    Senior Member Array HowardCohodas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by socuban View Post
    I haven't done it. I did read some horror stories about issues with connecting flights in non gun friendly states (read NJ/NY et al). I believe guns were confiscated and the owners hassled.
    I believe the problem was the baggage was retrieved because of flight cancellation. Trying to recheck caused the problem. There is controversy on whether or not this is fair or even legal. Meanwhile, they got your gun. If your checked baggage is checked through there should be no problem.
    Howard
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  10. #9
    Member Array BT1911's Avatar
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    It's not that big of a deal. I check handguns when I go to friendly states 3 or 4 times a year and just tell them I need to declare a firearm. The rules are simple regardless of the airline. Lock it up in a hard plastic case with a cable lock, place it in your checked bag, and keep your ammo in a separate (factory) box. I always take a 1911 so I also pack 2 loaded mags in a double pouch. You don't need any fancy $150 case, just the factory ones they come with or a $5 case from a sporting goods store. Make sure you have the cable lock completely secure with NO slack in it. It's a little tricky so practice it a couple times before you go. You'll get a funny look if you let that lock get away from you and unwind itself and slap you, the box, and maybe the TSA agent.

    TSA will never touch the gun or the box. They just sit there and watch you unlock it and then toss the orange declarations tag in it that you the airline counter person gave you. Then they'll watch you lock it back up and watch you place it back in your bag. All that's left is for you to check your bag.

    I wouldn't expect any hassle in North Carolina but the ticket counter knows you are declaring a gun and you may have to go through extra annoying security; e.g. arms out, Garrett wand, etc. That's only happened once.

  11. #10
    Member Array Detroittwister's Avatar
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    Nice little lock box, declare your weapon and you will have no problems. They are very professional.
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  12. #11
    Senior Member Array HowardCohodas's Avatar
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    This is a good choice to take up minimal luggage space. Cabela's -- Secure-It Handgun Storage Safe Secure it to the inside of your luggage.

    Check the airline website. At least one airline (I can't remember which one) requires you carry your ammo in a separate piece of luggage. It's beyond TSA regs, but it's their rules.

    Go safe and come back safe.
    Howard
    I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop!!
    Politically Incorrect Self Defense

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    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HowardCohodas View Post
    This is a good choice to take up minimal luggage space. Cabela's -- Secure-It Handgun Storage Safe Secure it to the inside of your luggage.

    Check the airline website. At least one airline (I can't remember which one) requires you carry your ammo in a separate piece of luggage. It's beyond TSA regs, but it's their rules.

    Go safe and come back safe.
    Cabela's 'Secure It' looks IDENTICAL to the Center-of-Mass safes......same price too! Either would work...but for my luggage I just use a less expensive lockable hard case, as my luggage is already locked...OMO.
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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    VIP Member Array JimmyC4's Avatar
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    I've flown a number of times with 1-2 handguns, and find one part of the process to sometimes be downright entertaining.

    When you open the hard case containing the handgun, watch the face of the TSA inspector--you can spot the ones who must know little about firearms, since they seem to have this glazed-over expression like it's a sasquatch sighting or something equally bizarre. I've witnessed some long pauses as they stare at the pistol like it's gonna crawl or even jump out of the case. On the other hand, I'm pleased that I sign and attest that it's empty without some clown handling my heater.

    Maybe it's just me that's seen this, but do take notice next time.
    "It's a big gun when I carry it, it is also a big gun when I take it out” – Clint Smith

  15. #14
    Distinguished Member Array SixBravo's Avatar
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    Nope. It's easy. I actually prefer flying with it because I usually get sent to the "Special Needs" desk at Sky Harbor - which means I don't have to wait in a 45 minute check-in line. Everyone is always very professional and nobody ever cares. Here in AZ I guess it is common so most of the time nobody even asks to open the case - just put the orange thing in the case if you can slide it in. A few TSA agents have asked to have my case opened - but that was only on my SKS.

    Its easier than buying a plane ticket.
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    "It is enough to note, as we have observed, that the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon." - Justice Scalia, SCOTUS - DC v Heller - 26 JUN 2008

  16. #15
    Member Array monky's Avatar
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    I've flown a few times with some firearms. Never had any problems.. Delta and AA (I hate AA but that's for another thread).

    You can't check in online when carrying a firearm and be SURE they hear you when you say it. Do NOT say 'I have a gun'.. I've been there when that happened. Tell them you need to declare a firearm. Usually they slip an orange ticket into the case (people behind you might freak out if you are not careful), and at DIA I was escorted to the TSA screening room. In Atlanta, they just pointed to it and said 'go there'.

    Atlanta they opened the suitcase, and swabbed for 'explosive' materials, put it in a machine and that was that. They never touched the firearm.

    DIA they asked to verify it was unloaded, then sent it through an xray machine. No problems at either airport.

    My friends dad one day.. was taking a a little .22 to his son-in-law. Never flown with a hand gun before, and he's rather 'ancient'. Didn't have it in a case, just had it loose in his luggage. When he got to the counter he goes 'I have a gun in my bag...' that little red button was pushed and hilarity soon followed. He's real old fashioned, and doesn't even have a computer. Did not know what he needed to do..

    The TSA actually sold him a case and locks after he was questioned and missed his flight.. I thought it was pretty funny, so did he.. his wife on the other hand wasn't exactly happy.

    I did not use a cable lock. I used the regular XD case, and two small master locks.. then secured my suitcase with a TSA lock. I had the ammo in the factory box, and once I got off airport grounds in my rental car I loaded her and began my two hour drive from ATL to Ellerslie, GA...

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