Airplane Transportation

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by 5stringFanatic, Nov 12, 2004.

  1. 5stringFanatic


    Mar 3, 2004
    NY, USA
    I know this came up recently, but i cant seem to find the thread for some reason, i might be retarted.

    Anyway, i have a flight from New York to L.A., and i need to bring my bass with me, whats the best way to go about this? - Its my warwick thumb, and im definetly not checking it in, they are too careless with that stuff. Whats the best way to deal with this situation when i get ot the airport?

    Also, one more thing, i dont know if this applied, but if i bring my bass on board, under the lower temperatures once you climb up, and becasue of pressure diferences, does this affect my bass in any way? do i need to loosen my strings or something?

    Any help in this matter will be greatly appreciated. I mianly want to know how to deal with the airport personal in order to get my bass on board with me.

    Thanks in advance,
  2. stamman5


    Aug 10, 2004
    For me, I have sometimes been able to get the bass in the actual cabin but not often. Most of time the bass is taken at gate check. The bass has to pass through the X-Ray machine and all that so don't store a knife in it ;) . Then as you are walking down the gate they will take it. HOWEVER BE VERY SPECIFIC when saying you want GATE pick up. Otherwise they take it from you at the gate and shove it in with the rest of the luggage and it comes out on the belt like anything else. Some airport people will tell that this is not possible on the bigger planes (747 etc.) but it is. You just have to be firm about it. I have done this a few times and have not had a problem with the temperature thing. One thing I would say though is to lock the latches that you can lock before giving it away. They will be okay with it because it has already passed security. This is the second best way to fly, the best being obviously to just buy a seat for the bass but I have had no trouble with this so far. Good luck
  3. 5stringFanatic


    Mar 3, 2004
    NY, USA
    Hey, thanks for the reply...

    What exactly is gate check? whats the difference between that and regular checking of bags? - also, i have this bass in a gig bag, because my case hasnt arrived yet , its on back order.. grrrrr - so i dont know if ill have it in time, which means its only going to be in its gig bag, which sucks.. - would gate check still be ok for that?

    Also, i read somewhere that becasue of the colder temperatures and the pressure and stuff the strings tighten up and they can mess up the neck, i dunno if this is true tho.. any help is appreciated.

    Thank you in advance,
  4. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao España
    the bass is in the cabin not in one of the wings :rolleyes: , youre flying to L.A. not to Germany an our or or 2 of 20º (in the cabin) wont afect your bass that much for making any damage to the neck. Just make sure, onece in LA, that you still having the same neck relief (spelling????) that you used in NY so it wont make you sound crapy.
  5. weldon


    Jan 3, 2003
    Denver, CO
    Gate check means you walk out the jetway with your bag and you have someone take it just as you are about to enter the door of the plane. They'll take your item and stow it with a tag that it should be brough back up to the door of the plane when you land. We do this all the time with a stroller when we travel with a small kid. They let us use the stroller up to the door of the plane (so we can get through the terminal easier without checking it at the counter) and then they bring the stroller back up to the jetway as we deplane.
  6. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    Gate check is ONLY good if you have a direct flight. If you have to change planes the baggage handlers will make the switch.

    Here is what I do.

    1. I carry the bass, in a gig bag on the plane. I send an SKB Bass Safe through empty. If there is a problem, I ask them politely, to get the Bass Safe and I check the bass. This is, of course a last resort.

    2. I DO NOT fly Delta as their policy towards musical instrucments suck

    3. I try to get a seat toward the back of the plane, that way I can board first and get space for the bass in the overhead.

    4. I do not fly Southwest for 2 reasons. No closets on board and no assigned seating

  7. iualum


    Apr 9, 2004
    Carry on is surely the best.

    But gate check DOES work on flights where you're changing planes. All you have to do is tell them the specific airport where you want it back.
  8. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"

    My experiences have been different. A number of times, I've been told that I would get the bass back at the final destination.

    Whatever happens - make sure you are clear on what the airline plans, try to bring it on-board and finally, fly an airline that is musician friendly. I've had great experiences on Northwest.

    You can be firm, but you MUST be polite. usually the flight crew is much more amenable than the ground staff. Ir you get to talk to a flight attendant, they usually go out of their way to help

  9. 5stringFanatic


    Mar 3, 2004
    NY, USA
    Thanks so much for all the replies.

    All this information will surely help me. Im going to try and talk to the flight crew personal as you guys are suggesting.

    I definetly hope that this goes smoothly. not only on the way there but my flight back as well, i hope everything works out.

    Id like to thank everyone who has helped and contributed answers, really does make me feel better about this whole deal, and definetly helps me as far as how to handle this situation.

    Kind Regards,
  10. JetJazz


    Sep 9, 2004
    For most U.S. carriers your bass(in a gig bag) will be considered a carry-on
    and just like any carry-on if it fits in the overhead bin or closet crews will be more than happy to accomodate.

    "gate check" is very common on commuter plans as the overhead bins will not accomodate an instrument and the one closet is very small and usually full.

    a previous thread was right, a good attitude toward the crews will go a long way toward getting your bass on board.