Tuesday, January 05, 2016

AFM Guidelines for Air Travel with Musical Instruments

Here's an unrelated post that may be relevant to those of us who occasionally travel with musical instruments.
I am still a  member of American Federation of Musicians, Local 65-699 Houston/Galveston and every once in a while I am offered a musical performance show where I have to travel by plane and take an instrument.
Back when I was a drummer, this might amount to cymbals and sticks, as nobody expects for anyone to fly with a complete drum set. Now that most of my shows are bass playing gigs, I often travel with one of my electric basses. Amplifiers are normally provided at the venue or through a local rental outfit since they are also prohibitively large.

I usually check my basses with regular luggage, using a hard-shell case with locks. I don't actually lock the locks because I have noticed that Homeland Security usually looks in the case and I don't want them to destroy it. Although I have an attachment to each bass I own, I never travel with a very expensive one since there's always a chance of losing it. So far that has not happened, thankfully.

Musicians who travel with rare or very expensive instruments should find this column helpful. It appeared in the AFM Musician Magazine a few months ago. DWB

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