Best way to pack gun for a flight (airplane)??

Best way to pack gun for a flight (airplane)??

This is a discussion on Best way to pack gun for a flight (airplane)?? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; recently applied for my CCW permit. I'd like to know the best procedure for packing your firearm in checked luggage. I know it must be ...

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Thread: Best way to pack gun for a flight (airplane)??

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array hayzor's Avatar
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    Best way to pack gun for a flight (airplane)??

    recently applied for my CCW permit. I'd like to know the best procedure for packing your firearm in checked luggage.
    I know it must be declared.
    Can ammo be packed in the same suitcase?
    Loaded magazines as well??
    What do you do when you fly and are going to be carrying at your destination??

    Thanks


  2. #2
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    I take one of my Center of Mass safes and lock the cable around my suitcase frame inside the suitcase. It does NOT have a TSA lock. If they need to open it, I want to be there. No matter what the rules say, place the signed orange tag the agent gives you on the OUTSIDE of the COM safe.

    Your ammo must be in a box and not in a magazine. The box they came in works fine. Unloaded magazines can go in the checked luggage or in your gun safe if there's enough room. I use the orange plastic chamber safety device that came with the gun to show it is unloaded. You must declare your firearm with the ticketing agent.

    I am not a lawyer, LEO, or TSA agent. Follow all appropriate local laws.

  3. #3
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    Array GunnyBunny's Avatar
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    Here are some places to start.

    TSA: Traveling with Special Items

    Transporting Firearms And Ammunition

    United Airlines - Travel Information, Restricted Articles in Baggage

    Different airlines have different rules. Go to the site of the airline you're flying and check out theirs. Print them out and take them with you just in case you get someone at the check in counter that is unaware of the procedures.

    I've flown from Canada to the US and back with my HK P7. If you know the rules and have your paperwork in order (international travel), it's no big deal. I was genuinely surprised how easy it was.
    CCW permit holder for Idaho, Utah, Pennsylvania, Maine and New Hampshire. I can carry in your country but not my own.

  4. #4
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    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    I almost always fly Delta...usually between FL and MI.
    I purchased a small, padded guncase that 'just' fits the firearm (with extra empty mags). I put a box of ammo (original box) in the same suitcase.
    I have never had any problems whatsoever...'smooth sailing'...always.

    Stay armed...use a TSA lock on your luggage...stay safe!
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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  5. #5
    Member Array Huzar's Avatar
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    I've been flying with firearms for over two years now and I've used I think by now every major airline that flies in US. What I do is pack the gun in a hard plastic case (you can use the case the gun came in originally) and lock it. Then I stick that and a box of ammo into a Pelican case and I lock the Pelican case. I lock the Pelican case with a NON TSA lock. When I check in the gun gets inspected, the case gets inspected and I lock everything. Then they take it and get it scanned and let you know if you're good to go. If there are any questions and they want another look see they come and get me BUT the outside case gets locked so that noone can take anything out of it.

    If you dig through the rules and regs on the TSA website you'll find that that's an approved way to travel and it insures that what you put in there meets you at your destination. Every so often the TSA balk at that, you then politely explain to them that it's Fed rules that you're following and from that point on, they are very cooperative.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array elkhunter's Avatar
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    Interesting.
    I find it hard to put a big orange tag on my gun & hope it makes it to my destination.
    I have never tried that anyhow.
    I am right now traveling to MI via airline, (writing this in DIA awaiting my flight) but on a (Non-Rev) buddy pass. There is NO guarantee for my checked luggage, So I sent my gun ahead with my wife a few weeks ago. (We will drive back together.)

    Thanks for those links Gunny Bunny, I may have to use them someday.
    It’s so much easier now days, to "Love and honor" my wife, when she is armed, and shoots a better group than I do. (Till death do us part, eh?)

    “The way you get shot by a concealed weapons permit holder is, you point a gun at him,” the Sheriff said.

  7. #7
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elkhunter View Post
    Interesting.
    I find it hard to put a big orange tag on my gun & hope it makes it to my destination.
    The orange tag is a federal requirement. It shows the TSA you legally declared your firearm. You don't put the tag "on my gun" as you stated, nor on the outside of your checked bag, but on the LOCKED container that holds your firearm.

  8. #8
    VIP Member Array JerryM's Avatar
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    I have been flying with a handgun for about 5 years. I never had any problem. I just put the gun in a cheap plastic case, lock it with a key, place the ammo in the suitcase (not the case the gun is in), declare it and go my way.

    I really do not worry about it getting stolen. If it does I'll just buy another, and not let it ruin my trip. Of course I don't have any $3,000 guns. Mine are all working guns, and can be replaced.

    Regards,
    Jerry

  9. #9
    Member Array cyberdogg's Avatar
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    Be careful about flying into NYC or LA. Both areas have strict gun control laws for those NOT covered under LEOSA.

    NYC do not tolerate transportation of a firearm even in a tightly locked case with a declaration tag. Flying into NYC airport with a locked case will almost land you in jail.

    Research gun transportation, carry and possession laws in each state to make sure you will avoid certain negative consequences. Stay safe!

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    OK, sit down for this. I flew out of JFK (yep NYC) to Florida without a hick-up nada nothing zippo. Took awhile for PA Leo's to show up and TSA after them. Looked at Nassau County License and I was good to go. I printed out everything twice never asked for anything more. I allowed for extra time and hassle. I hope next time goes half as easy as last time. Florida to NY it took a whole 3-4 minutes. Total. There are plenty of post about this. Just make sure that you are legal at starting and ending locations. If the plane has to land unexpectedly in a state you are not permitted to carry. DO NOT TAKE POSSESSION OF YOUR BAG!!!. Get in touch with airport police and explain that you are not permitted to carry in this state and how can you arrange for the safe keeping overnight of your firearm. People always get jammed up when they land in a city or state overnight and go to check bags back in the next morning. Good luck and be safe

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadMac View Post
    The orange tag is a federal requirement. It shows the TSA you legally declared your firearm. You don't put the tag "on my gun" as you stated, nor on the outside of your checked bag, but on the LOCKED container that holds your firearm.
    Actually, on the inside of the locked gun container...
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    Actually, on the inside of the locked gun container...
    It seems to vary by airline and whoever (whomever?) is on duty at the counter.

    On my most recent trip south, upon check in in Victoria, the slip was put inside the gun case, and a little tiny orange dot was put on the airline outer tag. Upon arriving in Seattle, an Alaska airlines employee already had my suitcase and escorted me to Customs where I had to show my ATF paperwork. Then my connection to Phoenix.

    Upon leaving Phoenix, the slip was put next to the gun case inside my suitcase. The TSA did open the suitcase (the TSA approved lock has an "opened" indicator) and the next time I saw it was in Victoria.
    CCW permit holder for Idaho, Utah, Pennsylvania, Maine and New Hampshire. I can carry in your country but not my own.

  13. #13
    Ex Member Array MadMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    Actually, on the inside of the locked gun container...
    I followed that procedure and was escorted from my gate in Detroit by two of Detroit's finest to meet with the TSA supervisor for not declaring my handgun. (I was flying from DTW to my home in NC.) I gave them the key to my COM safe so they could find the orange tag inside and verify I had declared it. The TSA supervisor told me to keep it on the outside of case next time.

    I told him the rules say inside. He said, "Leave it on the outside so we don't have to find you at the gate to verify it has been declared."

    ....just my experience...

  14. #14
    Member Array GHFLRLTD's Avatar
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    Taking Your Pistole Along

    Having traveled a number of times, here's how I go at it:

    1. Put the unloaded weapon(s) in a lockable hard-sided case with locks only you have the keys/combination to open. TSA locks are not allowed.
    2. Steps that will make it easier to show that the weapon is unloaded - especially when x-rayed.
      • If the weapon is a:
        • semi-automatic
          • lock the slide open
          • put a cable tie through the barrel and out the breach to show that the chamber is empty
        • revolver, flip the cylinder out
      • Do not put the magazines in this locked case with the gun(s):
        • it invites questions about them being loaded
        • if the gun case is "liberated" from the checked bag by a Criminal Entrepreneur, the lack of magazines frustrates the "Liberator", since the weapon is now initially a single shot one
    3. Check the airline(s) you are flying on:
      • To determine if the ammo
        • MUST be in boxes (plastic reload boxes work)
        • can fly in loaded magazines
      • If loaded magazines are permitted, make sure the pouches fully cover the magazines
      • The round(s) from the chamber(s)/cylinder(s) must be in a box, not loose
    4. Secure and protect magazines (separately from the weapon) and ammunition boxes from possible damage.
    5. Put the lockable hard-sided case with the weapon and the ammo/magazines into a cheap, non-descript bag - with clear labeling outside and inside - for checking in.
      • If possible, develop a way to attach - in a lockable way - the hard-sided case to the piece of luggage it has been placed into.
      • The labeling should be limited to:
        • Your Name
        • Your Cell Phone - if you have one, or your home phone if you do not
        • Your personal email address - if you have one
        • NO ADDRESSES, JOB TITLES, ORGANIZATIONS SHOULD BE INDICATED
    6. Other stuff - like shampoo, mouthwash, toothpaste, etc, could be in this checked bag also.
    7. Have the rules for the airline in hand when you check this non-descript bag at the airport.
    8. Make sure you have the keys/combinations to the lockable hard-sided case with you and you alone (Per Federal Regulations 49CFR § 1540.111 Carriage of weapons, explosives, and incendiaries by individuals - Electronic Code of Federal Regulations:) at all times. You will have to open the lockable hard-side case:
      • to demonstrate to the airline that the weapon(s) are not loaded at check in (a signed form/tag indicating that will go in with the weapon(s))
      • if the TSA wants to see
    9. Have the serial number(s) and descriptions of your weapons on you, so if they "disappear" you can report the loss/theft immediately to the:
      • airline
      • FAA Regional Office
      • ATF Regional Office

    Other things to consider:

    1. Check Handgunlaw.us and/or http://apps.carryconcealed.net/packngo/index.php to determine:
      • If you can possess the weapon at all your stops
      • Where and how you can carry at all your stops
      • What are the deadly force rules in each state you are visiting
    2. Have a copy of the Don Young Transportation Letter on hand - http://www.anjrpc.org/DefendingYourR...s%20letter.pdf. This covers changing modes of travel - car to plane to car - in a single journey.
    George H. Foster
    Orlando, Florida

  15. #15
    Distinguished Member Array MinistrMalic's Avatar
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    Don't fly with safe queens...it will break your heart when they get damaged or stolen. Just look up the airline website you are flying and follow their instructions and you will be fine. And check with your insurance company to make sure they cover the gun as personal property away from home if something were to happen.
    "...whoever has no sword is to sell his coat and buy one." (Luke 22:36)
    Christianity and Self Defense from a Biblical Perspective

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