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Carry on or check it?

Poll closed Sep 3, 2016.
  1. Carry on in a backpack and hope you don't have to check it.

    2 vote(s)
    28.6%
  2. Carry on in a hard case and hope you don't have to check it.

    3 vote(s)
    42.9%
  3. Check it in a hard case.

    2 vote(s)
    28.6%
  1. ifsteve

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    I have poured over all the threads on here about cases vs backpacks. Since I will be flying with my new P4 next month I am struggling with getting a backpack or hard case. I think I would prefer to carry on my drone so am leaning toward a backpack since it looks like hard cases are touch and go with being small enough to pass as carry on.

    But it seems like a backpack could end up also being too big. I hate the thought of trying to carry it on in a backpack and having to end up checking it....much better in a hard case in that situation.

    So what do you guys prefer?
     
  2. iAm

    iAm

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    I use a backpack.
    Security asked me to open my backpack and asked me to pull out my batteries.
    My battery terminals were taped. The battery was wrapped in a plastic sandwich bag and then packed in a Lipo bag.
    Security swabbed the pack to check for some type of residue.
    Then I was good to go.
    And no props in the carry-on.
     
  3. ifsteve

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    You don't carry on your props? Or can't you carry on props. A large reason for not wanting to check my P4 is to not have to check anything. If I have to check something anyway then I still have the hassle of waiting at the carousel.
     
  4. Reginald Thomas

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    I've carried on my Phantom 3 in a backpack with propellers on domestic flights. No problems with TSA.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  5. joet

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    Keep in mind that the TSA can and does miss stuff, either because they didn't see it or didn't realize it was prohibited, and the astuteness of their personnel can vary. I've taken things in my carry-on when flying out but was told before my return flight that the items had to be checked. I wouldn't be surprised a bit to hear that some TSA agent permitted props and that another one wouldn't let them through.

    If and when I take my drone on the plane, it's going to be checked in a hard case, with extra bubble wrap inside. The batteries will be in my carry on, terminals protected and all inside a small Pelican case with no room to move or contact anything else.
     
  6. ifsteve

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    This might be the least hassle approach?

    Surprised by how few responses.....maybe everybody is out flying!
     
  7. Hover_Florida

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    Heading over to Yellowstone next month (I know, I know) and was hoping to catch something outside the park areas with my P4. I did think about how to fly with it.

    I've seen Casey Neistat pack his in a luggage bag gimbal up and just pack all of his clothes around it then checks it on. I'm just so nervous about that as I use my drone for business not just pleasure. I'll keep browsing this thread for any more info you guys may have!
     
  8. With The Birds

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    Why not take in on as cabin luggage?
     
  9. CThruU

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    I flew 7 flights on Delta/Hawaiian Airlines earlier this summer with the Polar Pro Drone Trekker. I checked the props in my luggage just in case. Batteries in carry on. If your goal is to have no checked luggage at all, that combo won't work. Also, batteries cannot be checked, so you'd have to have a backup plan if you ended up checking the drone because of bag size or the props.

    I chose a soft bag because there's a little flexibility to get it through the overhead bin opening. With a hard case and a small plane, you might not be able squeeze it in. I put iPad, phone chargers, earbuds, a couple of snacks, glasses, P4, 3 batteries, filters, and my waterproof Panasonic camera in it with no problems.
     
  10. tcope

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    I've been on about 8 flights with my Phantom in the DJI backpack without any issues. As mentioned above, TSA once swabbed the the drone and batteries. Took about 2 minutes extra.You only need to make sure the pack meets the carry on size requirement. I've always been good about finding an overhead bin for it. I just make sure I'm not one of the last 10 people or so. Take on props and everything.
     
  11. Suewho

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    Yes, all in backpack as carry on. Sorry about , including the props as carry-on too


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots
     
  12. iAm

    iAm

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    I'm sure it's perfectly fine to carry-on your props.
    Wrap them up and place them at the bottom of your case.
    Make them invisible.
    I just take extra precaution as they could be perceived as a weapon by a paranoid security agent.
    Coming back from Italy my carry-on was scanned, I had the bird, other cameras, snacks and some clothing. The agents did not question or open my bag to take a look at all.
    Going to Italy and coming back home through security on my trip with my bird I could have carried on the props and it would not have been an issue. Just the batteries were an issue when leaving Canada.
    Have a great trip.
     
    #12 iAm, Aug 29, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2016
  13. Unmannedsky

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    FWIW I've done a bunch of travel with big time lipos/equipment. I use a pelican case stuffed full of 10-12 batteries as a carry on. That and the sensors always raise an eyebrow with TSA but they swab it and push it through. My aircraft is usually way too big to consider cary-on but I have taken spare props of substantial size in the cabin without issue.
     
  14. Nightfall

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    I've gone the carry-on route for ~30K miles so far this year. Batteries, props and all. I use the drone trekker softcase backpack. Drone Trekker Does an amazing job. I also use some soft silicone motor mount protectors for added protection of the plastic prop attachments. I do think this backpack fits a bit too snugly to not have those protectors. Just my opinion.

    I've taken this on-board aircraft on multiple US transcontinental flights, no issues whatsoever with domestic US TSA. Do note that, on smaller regional jets there is no way that it will fit in the overhead. So be aware So be aware of what type of acft you are flying. On the smaller regional jets, I've still managed a carryon- there I will try to book an exit row seat or an aisle seat and plan for the backpack to be a very tight squeeze underseat and to take up most of my legroom.

    I did run into an issue once on a small regional flight from Frankfurt, Germany to Luxembourg-- In Europe, you are not allowed to put anything under your seat in the exit rows. Fortunately, there was an empty seat a few rows back so I tucked my drone backpack under that empty open seat.

    Otherwise, I've taken the p4 thru airport security (without any issues) as a carry-on in: Germany, Luxembourg, Croatia, France and the US. Only once was I asked to open my backpack and remove the batteries for inspection (I did not have anything taped, wrapped or covered). Security just wanted to look at the model of battery-- while the agent was inspecting the batteries (I carry two) a supervisor (this was in Croatia) looked over and said, "Drone. Is OK. Yes. Let him thru." and that was that.

    No one has ever questioned the props (they are effectively plastic silverware).

    I will say, I think the soft-case backpacks also stand out a bit less than the hardshell. I chose it with this in mind, so that I looked like less of a target for a robbery while traveling abroad. Having the backpack (as opposed to a hard sided camera case to check under the plane) once in-country also makes it a heck of a lot easier to take out with you on hikes and adventures. Have fun!
     
    Skyer likes this.
  15. joet

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    Skyer likes this.
  16. John Locke

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    I've never seen anything restricting props in carry on. Someone made that up.

    I've flown over twenty flights with a Phantom as carry on. The only caution most people aren't aware of is that some small regional jets and prop planes (used a lot in Oregon and Washington) cannot fit most drone backpacks, even when they are the standard 22x14x9" size, acceptable on most airlines. The overhead storage isn't big enough. You are forced to let them put the bag in the belly sometimes. So you need to be prepared to carry on your batteries only. For that you need a little bag of some kind, but the batteries require individual protection to prevent shorting.

    Just make you aren't booked on one of these smaller planes. Look at the details for the type plane before booking.