UPDATE: Almost great news about taking your guitar aboard a plane!

Instruments on a plane!

UPDATE

February 18 2014

Well, sometimes some things are too good to be true. I was alerted to this article by Joan Lowy which contradicts the information I had been told. To follow up I contacted Ms. Lowy directly and was told:

The law says airlines are to permit passengers to store their instruments in closets, overhead bins and under seats where they fit. Passengers can buy a ticket for a seat for larger instruments weighing up to 165 pounds. … . However, airlines don’t have to do anything until the department issues regulations. Transportation officials say they don’t have the money to pay for writing these regulations. The department asked for funds to hire four more people to write all regulations in its last budget request, but was turned down. (Congress directs federal agencies to write a lot of regulations, some of which are complex and require a great deal of economic analysis. However, this would appear to be one of the more straightforward ones.)

So, in summary, the law has been passed, but until the department of transportation enforces it, we are still left to the same old lottery as we are used to. I for one will still be carrying a print out of the form below and writing to the department of transportation to get a move on…

Thanks to Joan Lowy for her help on this matter
Follow Joan Lowy on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/AP_Joan_Lowy

Simon

Instruments on a plane

As of February 14 2014, musicians have scored a major triumph In the ongoing battle to get musical instruments aboard flights. All too often we have heard stories of woe; snapped necks, broken bows, and demolished bridges. Now with a rather definitive law passed by US congress musicains are able to fly with more confidence.

As it pertains to guitarists, the instrument will be allowed on board without any extra charge if it can be stowed safely onboard the aircraft. It will still be in your best interest to get on the aircraft early, as those overheads fill up quickly these days, however your odds of a safe flight for your precious has just been dramatically increased!

Print out the applicable PDF pages (74-75)  of the new law, and carry it with you on your travels. This applies to US carriers only, but we will all hold out hope for an international elevation of standards!

PDF of the new FAA law

by Simon Powis

Here is the text from page 74-75

Happy valentines 🙂

41724. Musical instruments

‘‘(a) IN GENERAL.—
‘‘(1) SMALL INSTRUMENTS AS CARRY-ON BAGGAGE.—An air
carrier providing air transportation shall permit a passenger
to carry a violin, guitar, or other musical instrument in the
aircraft cabin, without charging the passenger a fee in addition
to any standard fee that carrier may require for comparable
carry-on baggage, if—
‘‘(A) the instrument can be stowed safely in a suitable
baggage compartment in the aircraft cabin or under a
passenger seat, in accordance with the requirements for
carriage of carry-on baggage or cargo established by the
Administrator; and
‘‘(B) there is space for such stowage at the time the
passenger boards the aircraft.
‘‘(2) LARGER INSTRUMENTS AS CARRY-ON BAGGAGE.—An air
carrier providing air transportation shall permit a passenger
to carry a musical instrument that is too large to meet the
requirements of paragraph (1) in the aircraft cabin, without
charging the passenger a fee in addition to the cost of the
additional ticket described in subparagraph (E), if—
‘‘(A) the instrument is contained in a case or covered
so as to avoid injury to other passengers;
‘‘(B) the weight of the instrument, including the case
or covering, does not exceed 165 pounds or the applicable
weight restrictions for the aircraft;
‘‘(C) the instrument can be stowed in accordance with
the requirements for carriage of carry-on baggage or cargo
established by the Administrator;
‘‘(D) neither the instrument nor the case contains any
object not otherwise permitted to be carried in an aircraft
cabin because of a law or regulation of the United States;
and
‘‘(E) the passenger wishing to carry the instrument
in the aircraft cabin has purchased an additional seat
to accommodate the instrument.
‘‘(3) LARGE INSTRUMENTS AS CHECKED BAGGAGE.—An air
carrier shall transport as baggage a musical instrument that
is the property of a passenger traveling in air transportation
that may not be carried in the aircraft cabin if—
‘‘(A) the sum of the length, width, and height measured
in inches of the outside linear dimensions of the instrument
(including the case) does not exceed 150 inches or the
applicable size restrictions for the aircraft;
‘‘(B) the weight of the instrument does not exceed
165 pounds or the applicable weight restrictions for the
aircraft; and
‘‘(C) the instrument can be stowed in accordance with
the requirements for carriage of carry-on baggage or cargo
established by the Administrator.
‘‘(b) REGULATIONS.—Not later than 2 years after the date of
enactment of this section, the Secretary shall issue final regulations
to carry out subsection (a).
‘‘(c) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The requirements of this section shall
become effective on the date of issuance of the final regulations
under subsection (b).’’.

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Comments

7 Responses

  1. Graco Manuel says:

    Thats nice!

  2. Patrick Seacor says:

    YEeeeha

  3. Ayako Shirane says:

    Hi my name is Ayako, I’ve been working for Virgin Atlantic 17 years. Last 3 years, I’ve been trying to talk into our customer relation regarding about this musical instruments policy. They haven’t budged yet.
    Their excuses are; we haven’t received any complains regarding this issue yet- and my reply has been that if we had isn’t it too late ? And also limited space inside the cabin which I can understand. But 99 % of the time, cabin crew are happy to take them on board.
    Any chance you can contact to Virgin Atlantic Customer relation? Or at least send this article to them, I am not computer literate I don’t know how to send this article to them.
    Also we’re going to code share with Delta very soon, and Delta seems to be learnt the lesson hard way.

    Much appriceated in advance.

    Ayako Shirane

  4. Celeste McClain says:

    American Airlines policy is, generally speaking, “No Way”.
    If the guitar is in a hardshell case you simply can’t take on board, even if it fits in the overhead, even if you spend the money for priority boarding so you have access to the overhead compartments before they fill up. Their policy states that if it doesn’t fit in overhead that it can be stored in a forward compartment, but that also isn’t true: as explained to me by an AA insider, they don’t always have a compartment to stow it in. Nor will they check it if you try to bring it on: every time I’ve tried, on American, I’m sent back to check it into baggage with regular luggage before I hit security.

    However, I’ve seen guitars in gig bags carried on and placed in overhead with no problems.

    I’ve tried to show American their own language and they still won’t comply.

    I know I can buy a seat for it… sometimes that’s just too costly. And it seems unfair that I can’t take it on merely because it has a hard case.

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