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Old 11-17-2011, 02:39 PM
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Default flying with flies?

So my dad's birthday is coming up soon and I'm going home for thanksgiving so I figured I would tie him some flies and get him a box for his birthday because he is beginning to get into fly fishing. I HATE having to check baggage, and almost always take everything as a carry on. Would I have problems bringing my flies on board the flight with me? At biggest I would have one or two size 6's and other than that maybe some 10's 12's and a bunch of much smaller flies. Thanks for any help!
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Old 11-17-2011, 03:38 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

I flew with a 5wt and 10wt in their tubes as carry-on luggage, also had about 5-6 fly boxes including hooks up to 6/0... No worries on southwest. TSA says to check with your individual carrier re: whether you can carry on. I was prepared to have them checked if necessary in a larger bag with stuff packed around the rod cases, but it was not necessary.

don't expect the crew or TSA to have all the fishing poles requirements memorized though. I had copies of both the TSA policy and Southwest's policy regarding fishing gear to show them in case they were unsure or not ok with it (remember, they have to make a judgment call quickly and get on with their day, make their job easy and you can bring all the fishing stuff you want within reason). Security ended up being a breeze, lots of people interested in fly fishing though!

I managed to catch a nice largemouth on the 5wt at one of lake shasta's inlets. Only fish of the trip!
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Old 11-17-2011, 04:03 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbblom View Post
I flew with a 5wt and 10wt in their tubes as carry-on luggage, also had about 5-6 fly boxes including hooks up to 6/0... No worries on southwest. TSA says to check with your individual carrier re: whether you can carry on. I was prepared to have them checked if necessary in a larger bag with stuff packed around the rod cases, but it was not necessary.

don't expect the crew or TSA to have all the fishing poles requirements memorized though. I had copies of both the TSA policy and Southwest's policy regarding fishing gear to show them in case they were unsure or not ok with it (remember, they have to make a judgment call quickly and get on with their day, make their job easy and you can bring all the fishing stuff you want within reason). Security ended up being a breeze, lots of people interested in fly fishing though!

I managed to catch a nice largemouth on the 5wt at one of lake shasta's inlets. Only fish of the trip!
Great news. I am flying southwest so hopefully it still holds true. Since I am only bringing a small box of hooks there would be no need for southwest to even know about it, and all that I was worried about was dealing with the security checkpoint. Is there anything on the TSA page about specific tackle? I looked at the page and it still seemed a little unclear. What pages did you bring with you? Anyone else have any experience?
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Old 11-17-2011, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

This topic has been batted about on this (and other) forum(s) many times. You might use the search engine to see what has already been written. Uh, why not save the hassle that could ensue (on any given day, with any given TSA agent, don't matter what the rules say (it matters not what the individual airline's policy is, all airlines go through TSA and they have those pesky xray machines so they WILL know about it, whether SW does or not) and mail them with a "do not open" label or something? Or to a neighbor? Just a thought.
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Old 11-17-2011, 05:35 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

I'd mail them too. Post office prepaid boxes are easy and cheaper than checking. It's a bit of a pain, but might be best. The reality is you can be right, but it's not worth getting into an argument with a TSA agent who might not know the rules on fish hooks. My goal when I go through security is to be as uninteresting as possible, so I've always checked my flies.
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:37 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

I've carried on hooks quite a few times. Many times I'll take hooks, scissors (very small ones), material when I travel to kill time in the hotel at night, and I always carry on. I have a copy of the TSA policy in my bag, but the only "Uh-oh!" was with the heavy pedestal base. A big chunk of metal seemed to concern them! After a couple of times I just ran it through the x-ray separately. But they never asked about the hooks or scissors. Last year I did this on about 15-20 trips (yes, I travel a lot!).
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Old 11-18-2011, 02:12 AM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

My mom works for United and has seen plenty of situations like this before that have gone both ways. Although a lot of times you wont run into any problems taking flies on board, around the holidays the TSA's "rules" go out the window and things can change depending on the agent you get. I wouldn't take the chance, just mail them and be done with it. Happy Holidays!
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:47 AM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

The few times I've flown with flies in a carry on bag, I had no issues, but it can happen. A friend of mine who flies a lot, sends his equipment & flies ahead via UPS. He says it can be tracked the whole way & is insured.

The USPS delivery confirmation does not track the whole way along. I just had a small package of hooks get lost that had delivery confirmation. They were shipped from California & arrived in Baltimore at the sort facility & that's where they've been lost. I filed a complaint, got a nice phone call saying they were sorry it happened, but still have not received my hooks!
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Old 11-18-2011, 11:38 AM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

I read somewhere else on here that you could not fly with reels because there was enough material to tie up the crew. However, I just found this on TSAs site:

Tackle Equipment
Fishing equipment should be placed in your checked baggage. Some tackle equipment can be considered sharp and dangerous. Expensive reels or fragile tackle such as fly's should be packed in your carry-on baggage.
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Old 11-18-2011, 03:47 PM
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Default Re: flying with flies?

I've lost too many items using USPS to trust them with any of my fly gear.
A full fly box is either worth a few hundred bucks or several hundred hours of tying time. I'd either check it or carry it on. With the TSA and airline paperwork in hand they can't really hassle you too much...
Just be REALLy nice

fishing is at the bottom, TSA's policy:
TSA: Traveling with Special Items

Southwest's policy:
Special Luggage

I flew with copies of these, but did not need them. Make sure to check the length of your rod, I think max length for carryon is short, 4pc 9' was no problem. You can check something like a 7'11" 1 piece rod in a tube as checked bags (similar to skis).
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