When it comes to air travel, touring musicians are professionals. Much like George Clooney's character in Up In The Air
, band members are all business when it comes to TSA pat-downs and numbered boarding zones. But that doesn't mean the guitarist from your favorite group doesn't get hassled by the flight crew just like the rest of us. But surprisingly there are a few laws and loopholes that will help ease the struggle during your next airline excursion.
1. You can bring a guitar on the plane - IT'S THE LAW!
One of the biggest complaints of all air passengers involves baggage policies. Checking a bag can cost upwards of 50 bucks, and for struggling and even successful musicians, those fees can obviously pile up. But alas, back in 2012, President Obama signed a bill that benefits all travelers, especially those wielding an axe (a guitar not a weapon, dummies!). FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 section 41724 clearly states:
(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
(B) there is space for such stowage at the time the
passenger boards the aircraft."
print out page 75, and flash it in faces next time they give you a hard time.
*Note: We don't know if this is legal, but either way, don't do this:
2. Planes are BYOB, bitch!
The only beneficial feature of flying is that it's totally acceptable to get shit-hammered at any hour. Unfortunately, airlines have caught on that passengers love to booze, and they've inflated the prices of their baby-sized Smirnoffs. BUT what they don't tell you is that you're free to bring your own booze onto the flight. Well, you can't carry on a rack of Busch, but you can bring your own flight-sized bottles.
What's the loophole, you ask? That recent rule that states all carried on liquids must be in bottles smaller than 100ml, and must be held in a single quart Ziploc bag? Yup. Ditch the shampoo you dingus, and stock up on your favorite gettin' loose juice!
One of these sip-sized bottles will run you near 10 bucks on the plane, but at the liquor store you can find them for around 2 dollars. You're welcome.