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Author Topic: Taking a kite aboard an airplane?  (Read 1924 times)
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GusG
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« on: November 29, 2009, 02:30 PM »

Has anyone ever taken a kite aboard an airline as carry on baggage?

I live inland and have never had the opportunity to fly on an ocean beach.  Iíll be vacationing on the Rivera Maya in a couple of weeks and would really like to fly but I donít know if I would be allowed to bring a kite on board.   It wonít fit inside my luggage. 

Any experience?  Anyone know what the airline policy or federal regulations are?  Can you take a kite through security?

Thanks,
GusG
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Mrhide
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« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2009, 02:43 PM »

take a look at Gomberg's faq:
http://www.gombergkites.com/faq/faq-trav.html
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JimB
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« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2009, 04:07 PM »

The last time I flew with kites was back in June on Jet Blue.

Flying out of NYC, I was required to check my kites - Three - broken down in a Speed bag - as luggage. They handled them as fragile - apparently they have such a category - and everything went quite well.

On the way back from Florida, The counter guy said to just take them on as carry-on - which I did with no problems - despite some anxiety going through security. They did not bat an eye.

So, it depends on where you are and what direction you are going and who you deal with it seems as to what the procedure is.

I think going by the book you are suppose to check them.. we all know how that goes.

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Josiah
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2009, 04:49 PM »

That cardboard tube inside rolls of carpet makes a great (and free!) carrying tube for a couple kites.  Just use some packing tape for the ends, and clearly label it with your address.

I've also had mixed luck getting my kites through as carry-on.  Easier to just count on checking them.  Wink 
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Tonka
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« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2009, 03:53 AM »

Break the kites down as far as they go [so both leading edge rods released] and put them in one of those triangle shipping boxes as it fits perfectly in the overhead bins of the aircraft. Label it well and have the airline counter person give you a couple pieces of their official tape [even though you wont need it] and stick it to the ends of the box making it look like THEY sealed it.

Security has never given me any issues with mine, they just might ask WHAT they are looking at in the box when it goes through the Xray machine.....

I travel for work and after seeing how the luggage people deal with suitcases i don't think i would want any of my kites handled by them [sorry if anyone is a baggage handler, i know some of you DO care about your job]

Be warned that if the you do not make the kites as small as possible [so the way you might take them in your car] and they go oversized it will cost you HUGE dollars to get them on the plane!!!
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quaa714
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« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2009, 10:05 AM »

I frequently travel with my kites (all Revs) and have never checked them. I've only carried them on and have not had any issues ever.

The one recommendation I'll make is to check any kite stakes/screwdrivers, knives or scissors that you have in your kit bag in your suitcase that you're checking.
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fworley
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« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2009, 10:18 AM »

You shouldn't have any issue carrying on - provided its just the kite in the box and the box is short (kite folded).
I carried a DS on (in a card board tube) to Europe this summer - no questions asked.

I've have good luck with checking them too ... I used to travel frequently - so bought a SportTube ski case for
the purpose. You're often allowed to check a ski case and pair of boot as a piece of luggage ... so thats hassle
free too - and the case is bullet proof.

-Frazer
« Last Edit: November 30, 2009, 10:39 AM by fworley » Logged
RonG
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« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2009, 10:33 AM »

I've have good luck with checking them too ... I used to travel frequently - so bought a SportTube ski case for
the purpose. You're often allowed to checked a ski case and pair of boot as a piece of luggage ... so thats hassle
free too - and the case is bullet proof.

10 years of travelling to kite competitions, much of it by air, always used a SportTube, always checked them, and I never had an issue.  And most of that travel was post 9/11, so it's not like security was light.

Don't go in expecting or looking for trouble, and 999 times out of 1000 you won't find any.
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JimB
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« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2009, 10:46 AM »

I have a SporTubeô.

It's been good for traveling with a big pile of stuff.

I don't do that much anymore.

The only issue I've had is finding it open at my destination despite taping extra zip ties for the security guys to use when they are done inspecting the contents.

They use the the zip ties alright, they just do not seem to be able to get them through both sections of the tube. So, it's only passed through the outer hole and not the inner hole.

This has happened 100% of the times I've used it since 911.

Just luck that nothing has been lost.
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RonG
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« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2009, 11:44 AM »

The only issue I've had is finding it open at my destination despite taping extra zip ties for the security guys to use when they are done inspecting the contents.

They use the the zip ties alright, they just do not seem to be able to get them through both sections of the tube. So, it's only passed through the outer hole and not the inner hole.

This has happened 100% of the times I've used it since 911.

Just luck that nothing has been lost.

I've seen it happen (Shawn), but never experienced that problem myself.  My tube has a cotter-pin type closure, and it's always been back in place at the other end of the line.  I do tape extra ties to the tube just in case.

One thing I try to do is be there when they open the tube for inspection.  It has become a lot easier since some airports established separate bag check/inspection stations from the check in counters.  Hand the tube over and wait there till they've opened, inspected, and closed it.  Also the snowboard tube has helped, since I can just stuff the whole kite bag in there without having lots of separate items.  Even if they didn't close the tube properly, there wouldn't be anything loose to fall out.

« Last Edit: November 30, 2009, 11:47 AM by RonG » Logged
JimB
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« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2009, 03:30 PM »

I have Two of those cotter pins that they sell to go with the tube in addition to about Ten zip ties taped to the outside of the case, plus a whole lot of kite stickers to help make it look less like some sort of weapons platform.

Somehow the security guys just keep missing.  Roll Eyes

I don't use it much anyhow.
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tcope
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« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2009, 04:59 PM »

I've checked kites in a Bazooka tube without any problems. Well, SW did break the tube (not easy to do) a little but some duct tape and it was not bad. I figured that its why I use the tube and it did it's job.

I've also taken 2 indoor revs as carry ons with no problems. Some staff require me to place the kites in the overhead bins... so you want to make sure they fit. A good recommendation I got was to place them all the way in the back of the compartments. They slow down so bags cannot go all the way to the back. I usually hold onto the kite until everyone is done and then ask someone to place it on top of the bags in the bin. I'm guessing if the kite did not fit that they would probably find some place to store the kite during the trip. SW has always been _great_ about this. I've flown Delta as well with no problems.

The first time I did this was was _very_ afraid of problems. RonG assured me that there should be none and he was right... as he is in this post. But that first time it's always a little unnerving.
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Todd Copeland
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Jeepster
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« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2009, 05:31 PM »

I found this fly rod case at Bass Pro Shop for $20.  The one I bought is 40-1/2 inches long with an internal diameter of 2-1/8 inches.  It's reasonably small and yet will hold over 30 rods.  I place the sail and all other stuff in my checked luggage and put the rods in the fly rod case.  For my Revs, it's not a big deal to pull all the rods for airline travel.

To airline personnel, fly rod fisherman seem to be a bit higher on the "cool" scale than guys who fly kites.  They don't even blink when they see the fly rod case.  Plus, I can sneak it on in addition to my normal carry-on piece of luggage.

My son takes the opposite approach and uses a 2" diameter piece of PVC tubing w/ one end cap glued on and one end cap held on with gray tape.  His tube looks like it just came off a job site.  He thinks the airline folks don't want to mess with a red neck fisherman.

Cheers,
Tom
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adx1592
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« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2009, 06:51 AM »

when i took mine to seattle, I just put a hard tube in my Bag and checked it. No problems!
This was well before 911 though, so i dont know if the security or standards have changed for checking or anything.
Just my 2 cents. If youre going to take the bag, I'd do that.
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-Devin Cobleigh-Morrison
RonG
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« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2009, 08:01 AM »

when i took mine to seattle, I just put a hard tube in my Bag and checked it. No problems!
This was well before 911 though, so i dont know if the security or standards have changed for checking or anything.

10 years of travelling to kite competitions, much of it by air, always used a SportTube, always checked them, and I never had an issue.  And most of that travel was post 9/11, so it's not like security was light.
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