Taylor Guitars Offers Tips to Keep Your Guitar Safe When Flying

(ShackMan | Posted 2009-07-16)

Taylor Guitars Offers Tips to Keep Your Guitar Safe When Flying

For information on the story thus far, please view Dave Carroll’s “United Breaks Guitars” video and his follow-up statement. Both can be found on Youtube. Of course, the views expressed in these videos are not those of Musicgearreview.com and its related websites, employees, or other subsidiaries in any way. We’re just bringing you the news.

Still, this reporter is glad to see that this is not being handled with protest or riot or even loud voices, but with a few lighthearted songs and a simple discussion with the airline industry to take a little better care of the luggage they’re hauling. Read on for Taylor’s response to the issue.

From El Cajon, CA - July 10, 2009

To address the hazards commercial airlines pose to travelling with a guitar, Taylor Guitars is here to offer tips and tricks to keep your guitar safe as you travel and keep Dave Carroll’s situation from happening to you. While the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) came to an agreement to allow guitars to be considered as carry-on luggage in 2003, thousands of musicians can relate a personal tale of instrument mistreatment at the hands of any number of airlines.

With advice from the AFM, here are a few tips Taylor Guitars recommends:

Know the pertinent policies of the airline on which you are traveling. There are links to many of them on the AFM website, so print them out and take them with you. Many flight attendants do not know their own airline's policy regarding carry-on guitars, so if you can calmly explain that your instrument is within their mandated guidelines, and actually show them those guidelines, you will be way ahead of the game.

Know your instrument's size in linear inches, which is the sum of your case's dimensions. If, for example, your case measures 20 inches long by 20 inches wide by 10 inches high, it would be 50 linear inches. Almost all airline maximum size dimensions use either Length-by-Width-by-Height, or linear inches. In many cases, even though your instrument case does not fit in the "size wise" metal contraption at the gate, it might well be within the linear-inch maximum. Again, know the linear inch measurement of your case beforehand.

Carry a "fabric" tape measure with you. Even if you never use it, sewing-type tape measure takes up almost no space and weighs almost nothing. And it might just come in handy if you're challenged about your case dimensions.

If you would like additional tips and information from the AFM on keeping your instrument safe, please visit: http://www.afm.org/departments/legislative-office/instruments-as-carry-on.

To learn more about the TSA's policies regarding musical instruments, please visit: http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1235.shtm

To learn more about Dave Carroll and his video, "United Breaks Guitars", please visit: www.davecarrollmusic.com

For additional information about Taylor Guitars and the Taylor Guitars Service Center, please visit" www.taylorguitars.com

Have your own thoughts on these events? Would you like to speak your own mind about airline policies? Head on over to the Music Gear Review forums and start something there where your post can reach thousands each day.

James is a bassist, pianist, organist, composer and writer currently living and working in the Pittsburgh, PA, and Morgantown, WV areas. He is currently writing tunes and holding down the low end for Morgantown-based jazz band No Room for Squares.

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