Airlines-flylines [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Airlines-flylines


GMflyfish
04-13-2008, 01:38 PM
I wanted to report my recent experience on a trip to Acklin's Island, Bahamas, relative to carrying loaded reels in carryon luggage. Thanks to information in a recent thread titled TSA Locks from March 2008, we were somewhat prepared for the hassle.
I've elected to start a new thread, rather than attach more to the prior discourse.
The trip there via Atlanta to Nassau was OK with loaded reels and three rods in tubes allowed in carry on. I had some of my flies in carryon, and that was questioned, but allowed through.
The trip from Nassau to Acklin's was OK, even some flies getting through. I removed a couple of lines from reels as a precaution.
The return to Nassau was no problem, with essentially no security check; one passenger in fact had a shotgun and shells along on board.
The flight from Nassau back to Atlanta provided a problem. I packed away all my flies in checked baggage, but still had the rod tubes with my carryon backpack. I left backing on one reel, and they would not let that through in carryon. I fortunately still had access to my checked bag, so rather than place the reel or spool in that, I opted to rewind the backing from my reel onto a spare plastic spool I had brought along for the purpose. I used an empty spool that new fly lines come on. It took quite a while manually, but I was not pressed for time. That way I was able to keep my good reels, without line or backing, in my carryon. I did put two full spools in my checked bag, but had the reel frames for those in carryon. Keeping the frames with me reduced the possible loss.
I was fortunate that I still had my checked bag with me when I found they would not allow the backing, otherwise I would have had to strip it off and lose it.
So be prepared when departing from Nassau. Again my thanks to those who provided information on this forum, which prepared us for the possible security hassle. Why flylines or backing represents a security issue is beyond me.
GMflyfish

Trevor B
04-13-2008, 02:52 PM
I think it is beyond all of us as to why there is a problem with lines, In all my travels I have so far never had a problem but like you say it's best to be prepared for it rather than lose an expensive line and Backing.
I am flying in and out of Cancun in not too many weeks and I wonder if anyone has had any experience with that airport ?
Thanks for the update I think we all appreciate it :)

formula1
04-13-2008, 05:26 PM
Good to know that removing the backing did the trick...I've been told by some (but it was speculation that was never proven) that they don't like reels because they think the reels themselves can be used as a weapon (why anyone would think of using a fly reel to bludgeon someone is beyond me). I'd always asked whenever someone brought up such a post as to whether or not they tried taking the backing off and never received a reply. My guess is that they were purely speculating and never tried to take the backing off. Of course this could change but your post was much more clarifying than the speculation I've heard on other boards.

nmbrowncom
04-13-2008, 06:15 PM
i just came back fro m freeport and had no problem with lines either from US or bahamian customs, both of which are located in freeport. GM, was it US or bahamian customs. i swear, they make it up as they go along.

GMflyfish
04-13-2008, 07:43 PM
nmb
The trouble spot in Nassau airport for me was security, not customs. After checking in at the counter I hauled my checked bag to security and was stopped by security and asked about fishing reels. They likely noticed my rod tubes on the backpack. At that point I had backing on one reel, so I got out of line and proceeded to remove it and put the backing into my checked bag. I then went through the same spot, with different personnel, and no questions were asked. However after depositing my checked bag on a conveyor where it would soon disappear, I was into another security station with xray, and I had to open my backpack to prove there was no line on the reels I had in my carry on.
Last year we had no trouble carrying loaded reels aboard. There is a great lack of consistency, and no straight answers.
For the trip down, one fellow in Nassau suggested to not even ask a question, because that was likely to provoke a NO answer.
I had plastic rod tubes, but my buddy had a couple metal tubes, even longer, which he got through without difficulty.
Thanks.
GMflyfish

Tim D
04-14-2008, 01:35 PM
Trevor,

I too am flying into Cancun a week from this coming Friday to fish Pesca Maya. I know someone that had been going there for years, including a trip two weeks ago, and he has never had a problem carrying on his reels with line and backing.

Hopefully we will have the same luck. :)

Trevor B
04-14-2008, 06:06 PM
Tim
Thanks, like I said I have not had a problem yet, yet being the the word. I really think for the most part it's who ever you get at security on the day.
Flying out of Canada has so far not been a problem for reels, lines or Rods.
Best of luck on your trip, look forward to hearing how you made out.
Tight lines Trev

petevicar
04-15-2008, 12:06 PM
Since I lost a rod case with 4 Scott rods on the way back from the Seychelles a few years ago I pack all my tackle in a large suitcase. The new model I bought beginning of last year has TSA locks on it.
It is made from very lightweight polycarbonate and is practically indestructible.
I carry all my clothes and 4 piece rods, packed in a piece of plastic drainpipe, and reels inside the case.

I have not, as yet, touch wood, had a problem.
Even when the airlines fail to get the case on the plane and this has happened only on the return journey, I have not lost anything from the case.

Pete

doctorsteve
04-16-2008, 02:01 PM
Going to the Seychelles, we flew JFK to Paris to Mahe. Taking rods and reels TO Paris was ok, but they made us check them LEAVING Paris to Mahe. There really seems to be no rhyme or reason. 3 of us had to check our reels, but one guy that went through before us with a whole crapload of stuff got through no problem (you know who you are, Eric!) On the way back, I threw everything into my suitcase to avoid hassles. I just wish the airports were consistent.

Steve

Trevor B
04-17-2008, 01:16 PM
That's the word right there CONSISTENT ! then we would all know where we stand and it would make it that much easier to deal with.

JR SPEY
04-18-2008, 09:37 AM
And it would make things so much easier for the terrorists as consistency equals predictability. While we all might wish for it, as I've stated before on this board and others, it'll never happen. That lack of consistency is intentional and it's not to drive us nuts, but rather to help keep us safe. Again, as I've said before, if you stop to think about it while putting your own needs for consistency aside, things really are very unlikely to get better over time. They are almost assurely going to get worse. I see a time in the very near future where virtually nothing will be allowed as carry-on unless it is a medical necessity. Don't laugh, there are many who are pushing for that already. Also, consolidation will minimize actual competition which will mean airlines will be far less accomodating regarding ignoring of their own rules for the size (especially length) of a carry-on article. Almost every airline has a maximum length rule that is thirty inches or less (at least one has a 22" maximum length---at least it did a few years ago.) In the spirit of customer satisfaction, a lot of times these are ignored by gate and flight attendants. When there are fewer airlines going to each destination, that need for customer satisfaction isn't as great. I think Air Canada is an example of that.

figen
04-18-2008, 01:55 PM
And it would make things so much easier for the terrorists as consistency equals predictability. While we all might wish for it, as I've stated before on this board and others, it'll never happen. That lack of consistency is intentional and it's not to drive us nuts, but rather to help keep us safe.


I find it difficult to follow your logic that occasionally banning a potentially unsafe item is safer than consistently banning it? Changing threat levels and constant evaluation of what constitutes a safe item aside, at any given time an item is either deemed safe or not. Sure there might be different assessments, or more accurately practices, at various locations, but the notion that this inconsistency in itself is a safety precaution is ridiculous. Especially since geographically locations are usually fairly consistent, although not similar to others. It would take a terrorist of monumentally idiotic proportions to fail in learning the policy of any given airport. Not to mention the level of dexterity required to take over an airliner using a fly line. :hihi:

I believe you would be very hard pressed to find any significant correlation between carry-on allowance and the airlines market-derived necessity of providing customer service. The regulations come into place for a variety of reasons, most of originating in practical and safety concerns as far as I can tell. Luckily in the US one can still bring on board the kitchen sink, at the airline's discretion.

JR SPEY
04-18-2008, 02:50 PM
I agree that setting up a consistent policy where most everything that could conceivably be used as a weapon is banned would be best. It's just not politically viable---yet. As I pointed out, it's likely to come along sooner than most of us wish. Figuring out one airport's policies and routine is fine, but the trouble we have here is that each terminal in one airport may operate differently. In fact, it's not unusual for two different aisles of TSA security at the same terminal to be different. That is intentional and it's not my idea that it is. I've read several articles to that effect and it is clearly stated that that's the intent. The best terrorists can get by anything, but a lot of klutzes exist and some of them have been caught in their tracks before they could do any harm. It is the job of security to make it as difficult as possible for the terrorists and if that makes it incovenient for the rest of us there's really not much that can be done. I don't think the experts agree with you that inconsistency as a safety precaution is ridiculous. Of course, you're entitiled to your opinion, but after making a similar post on speypages a few weeks ago both an airline pilot and a TSA agent PMed me to say that I was on the right track.

I also disagree with your assessment of carry-ons and customer satisfaction. In fact, those dots are easy to connect. As an example, the closet designed for use by the crew does not necessarily have to be used by them for customers bringing two-piece rods on board. In fact, in the US, there is a specific federal policy discouraging its use for that purpose. However, many airlines will allow passengers on board with rod tubes well in excess of the stated limit and they often store them in that closet. They want to avoid the customer frustration that would come by being told it would have to be checked. I see many, many people come on board with well over the limit of carry-ons. In the US, you're allowed one carry-on and one small item like a purse or laptop computer. It's not unusual at all to see people walk on board with four and five pieces. I just came back from Belize this week and one lady had five carry-ons with her. I'm sure the training encourages that if it does not appear as if there is a saftey risk, that it's better to ignore a rule than risk a customer deciding that next time he/she will fly a different airline. You seem to think I meant the regulations themselves are determined by customer satisfaction. If you go back and re-read my post, I was referring to the exceptions to the rules that are made prior to and during boarding. I think, in fact I know, that those exceptions have everything to do with minimizing customer angst. They are trained to just more or less pretend they don't notice that you have too many carry-ons, but I don't think in reality most of the flight attendants miss very much.

figen
04-18-2008, 06:09 PM
I don't think the experts agree with you that inconsistency as a safety precaution is ridiculous. Of course, you're entitiled to your opinion, but after making a similar post on speypages a few weeks ago both an airline pilot and a TSA agent PMed me to say that I was on the right track.

A complete and consistent ban on a given item = 100% chance it gets stopped.
A 50/50 spread on checkpoints on same item = 50% chance it gets stopped, but a slight increase in that a bad guy will attempt to carry it on.

How the latter is the better safety approach is simply beyond me, as half the time the item will get through, and if the terrorists operate in groups going on separate checkpoints, they are almost guaranteed success. I must be missing a major logical, or at the very least causal, mechanism here. Care to enlighten me? You don't suppose they utilize these tactics with firearms as well? Perhaps every third Thursday checkpoint 2 in terminal 3 will allow loaded guns? Oh my, how the terrorists will be confused by the cunning TSA... ;)

It's obvious that transparency can be a security issue, there are many components that they like to keep close to their chest, such as air marshals, armed pilots, procedure for cargo/luggage scanning and whatnot. That's very different than inconsistent enforcement of carry-on items. Another key element is the ability of the local TSA personnel (and others) to put two and two together and see things/persons/situations in context which can trigger scrutiny beyond the norm. Perhaps this is what you're talking about, and I'm reading you wrong in that inconsistency for inconsistency's sake helps safety. Capacity might be an issue, so that 50% scans is better than 0%, but still inferior to 100%, but then it's a matter of random inspections, not inconsistency.



You seem to think I meant the regulations themselves are determined by customer satisfaction. If you go back and re-read my post, I was referring to the exceptions to the rules that are made prior to and during boarding. I think, in fact I know, that those exceptions have everything to do with minimizing customer angst. They are trained to just more or less pretend they don't notice that you have too many carry-ons, but I don't think in reality most of the flight attendants miss very much.

The main difference, as I see it, is whether or not the aviation authorities or airports introduce and enforce regulations, as is the case in the EU, now topping the idiot-scale in aviation by a handsome margin. It has nothing to do with the airlines desire for customer satisfaction, you will not get a chance to charm the FA into fondling your rod in the closet (heh) since you'll never get your stuff through the security checkpoint. Doesn't matter if you're flying intl. F and get three super-sized overhead bins to yourself, the dickwads at the checkpoint will ruin your day. The regulation-zealous central authority is by far the greatest factor determining what we're allowed to carry on. Of all the denied items we experience and hear of, they are almost exclusively related to airport checkpoints, not airlines. In a nutshell, get your stuff to the plane and you're golden.

The enforcement of the rules is critical as you say, but even here there's a clear difference between what's airline based and what are really central regulations that must be enforced, regardless of what the airline might think. Yes, it's possible that the airlines might start to enforce less/smaller carry-ons on their own, but who really cares when we got an 800-pound gorilla in the room disguised as aviation authorities. It's an entirely different matter to break strict FAA regulations than gently bending the airline's own policy, or even ignoring a federal requirement that is rarely enforced anywhere (since it's more or less ignored even by the inspectors). The in-cabin rules are pretty similar between the US and the UK, yet the cabins are run very differently with significantly different levels of enforcement. It's unlikely that one side of the Atlantic has conspired to lower customer satisfaction due to less competition (your dots connected), it's all about the rules, enforcement practices and penalties. Customer satisfaction concern of the airline might not be completely irrelevant, but its significance certainly pales when compared to rules with serious penalties.

Another reason why I don't automatically agree with your statement is whether or not the airline actually would prefer to have less carry-on. I don't see that is clear cut in any way, I'm not sure on the real cost for the airline in terms of checkpoints vs. luggage handling, but I'd be surprised if the latter was cheaper. It will certainly come with some extra expenses in terms of check-in service, delayed luggage, customer care and of course a drop in customer satisfaction. What's the incentive of going down that path?

I do understand the difference from my take on your first post and the follow-up clarification. I think your dot connections may be a little far fetched to describe carry-on allowance in general, especially globally, although your reasoning is sound and might apply to the North American market. In reality either $$$$ or central government are far more likely to change both the rules and the enforcement of them. Different set of rules, different players and different motivation.

JR SPEY
04-19-2008, 07:12 AM
It amazes me sometimes. Your entire first two paragraphs were answered in the first sentence I wrote in my last post. You really should go back and read it.

Since I have neither the time nor the will to continue this, let me just make a couple of quick responses and then I'll gladly let you have the final say.

There are many things in the US that will go through TSA security but which violates the carry-on policies of the airlines and the FAA. Heck, TSA couldn't care less if you have ten carry-ons. Unlike before 9/11 they aren't there to check to be sure you're following airline policies. Our airlines consistently ignore their own rules in order to keep customers content and flying with them. I don't think there's anyone in the US who flies pretty regularly who doesn't recognize that. It may well be different in the EU. The fact that we have dozens of airlines means that customer satisfaction is critical to each airline.

I never said the airlines would be the ones to choose to eliminate, or at least seriously curtail, carry-on baggage. There was a very thorough article in the USA today covering this issue about a year ago. What amazed me was how many people wrote letters to the editor agreeing that all carry-ons should be banned. Besides, many US airlines now charge $$$ for more than one check-in piece. Eliminating carry-ons could even be a money maker for them, though I still don't believe that would cause them to be the ones to initiate the policy.

formula1
04-19-2008, 07:57 AM
It'll be a costly day if they completely eliminate carry-ons. Not just for fishing tackle which is admittedly a very small percentage of the customers on airplanes but for the people who travel with expensive electronics such as laptops, digital cameras, etc. I don't fly Continental anymore if I can avoid them because they forced me to check in my rods on one flight and refused to be responsible if they went missing. What will they do if everyone had to check in their laptops and electronics? At some gates I see 1 in 3 people on their laptops. And just about everyone has digital cameras, MP3 players, etc. What happens if these start disappearing from checked in bags? I can easily see people protesting these losses and demanding that the airlines reimburse them...and the airlines losing money to cover these thefts.

figen
04-19-2008, 09:50 AM
It amazes me sometimes. Your entire first two paragraphs were answered in the first sentence I wrote in my last post. You really should go back and read it.

Those are two completely different matters. Your claim was that (TSA believes) inconsistency increases safety and it is intentional, since it takes away predictability for terrorists, in contradiction to TSA's official statements. You cited several sources. I merely asked if you could state the mechanisms with which this method is supposed to yield any safety benefit, I am well aware that you do not necessarily support this approach yourself, I do read your posts, but since you listed pilots, TSA-agents and several magazine articles as sources, I assumed the topic of effectiveness had come up, in what appears to be a completely bonehead policy. No wonder they keep it secret, if it is in fact true that the inconsistencies are intentional (which I personally do not believe, at best they are side-effect of capacity problems or lack of ability to ensure consistency, or more likely just a positive spin on their lack of ability.) If you know of no such rationalization or justification of this policy, that's fine and all I wanted to know. It's really not relevant what you think is the best method and policy, so you'll have to excuse me for not taking that as an answer to the other question dealing with the supposed benefits of inconsistency. I should thank you for posting this interesting tidbit about the tactics behind TSA's operations, although I'm making no effort to hide that I do not believe it to be accurate.

(Your personal opinion on what would be the best policy and approach is not at all interesting to me. Especially since we appear to agree on that topic. :) )

JR SPEY
04-19-2008, 01:06 PM
It'll be a costly day if they completely eliminate carry-ons. Not just for fishing tackle which is admittedly a very small percentage of the customers on airplanes but for the people who travel with expensive electronics such as laptops, digital cameras, etc. I don't fly Continental anymore if I can avoid them because they forced me to check in my rods on one flight and refused to be responsible if they went missing. What will they do if everyone had to check in their laptops and electronics? At some gates I see 1 in 3 people on their laptops. And just about everyone has digital cameras, MP3 players, etc. What happens if these start disappearing from checked in bags? I can easily see people protesting these losses and demanding that the airlines reimburse them...and the airlines losing money to cover these thefts.

In no way did I imply that any of us would be happy over that development even though a lot of people supported it in letters to the editor in USA Today. It also occurred to me that there is no way to know if those writing in actually spent much time flying. However, when push comes to shove, the Department of Homeland Security will win out and if they deem it necessary you can count on it happening. Actually, more than loss of expensive items through theft, I would worry about damage to relatively delicate items like laptops and digital cameras. To put it simply, I think flying (and sorry that this is my opinion again) is going to be much more of a hassle down the road. I think the fact that it's still easier in the US than almost anywhere else in the world is a good example of where we're heading. I'm simply glad that my age and health are going to put an end to my travels before most of this is likely to develop, barring another serious terrorist attack happening fairly soon.

formula1
04-19-2008, 01:18 PM
JrSpey, I've always valued and respected your opinions. However, I do not think carry ons will be prohibited - just checked more thoroughly. In the end, it's all about one thing...$$$. Not to get into politics, as this is not the place for it, but I'll mention it once and I will not debate it - Terrorist attacks such as 9/11, if one wanted to look at it one way, is motivated by money - simply put, our continued involvement in the middle east for oil - whether it is wrong or right I will not debate. Too many people depend on delicate electronics these days to not travel with them - business travelers, students, everyday working people, even people on vacation from business often take laptops with them to keep in touch with business. Take that away and the airlines may lose business domestically to other forms of travel such as rail and car. If that happens and we have more big losses in the aviation sector I would think that Homeland Security may do a rethink of carry on's if it the scenario you propose came to pass.

Personally I would not travel by air for fishing then unless the airlines were willing to take full responsibility for all losses.

JR SPEY
04-19-2008, 05:21 PM
The first reaction of most everyone is denial that it could happen. Many of the inconveninces we now deal with would have been unthinkable ten years ago. Just the fact that family members and friends can no longer see us off at the gate nor meet us at arrival would have been impossible to implement before 9/11, and it wasn't all that popular even after it. I hope you're right as I too would be bothered by it, although I have not packed a single item of fishing tackle as carry-on since 9/11 so to me the inconvenience wouldn't be as severe as it would be for those who insist on carrying everything on. The airlines will never make that guarantee because there's no way to prove that the loss was the airline's responsibility. As I've pointed out before, thefts also occur through the TSA, including a couple that have made national news. While I agree that money is a big motivator against its implementation, US Today made some good points about why it's nearly inevitable eventually. Wish I had kept that article, but I say that all the time and usually can't find them even when I know I've saved them. I know one of their points was the cost of TSA and the length of the lines in many airports. With only medically necessary stuff allowed as carry-on they would need far fewer people at the security areas and the process would go much faster. And the need for more sophisticated (read: expensvie) equipment at security would be reduced significantly. Their major point, though, was the much higher level of security that each flight would have, though nothing is ever absolutely safe.

petevicar
04-20-2008, 10:35 AM
This has developed into an interesting thread.
I live in Europe and I make approx. 10 trips per year to go fishing somewhere by plane.
I also take other flights for family holidays and some business.
There is considerable inconsistency in security at different airports around the world.
These days the only things I take as carry on are cameras, ipod, book, reading glasses and wallet with passport. Sometimes if I feel that there is a danger that my luggage my be delayed i may take a change of clothes. Everything else is checked in.

I may have been lucky but I have never lost anything. My luggage sometimes is delayed.


Airport security is a strange thing. It seems that there is incredible paranoia in the US.
In my experience security is toughest in U.S. airports and in most other countries with flights going to the U.S. security is, in U.S. terms, pretty slack.

yimmj
03-26-2009, 05:48 PM
I am headed for Belize in 4 weeks and wondering if it's a problem with reels out or the US to Belize or back. I don't want to pack my reels in checked bags. But, If i gotta...

Vince
03-26-2009, 06:36 PM
I've had no problem carring on my rods or reels (with backing and fly line)
to Belize and Bahamas this year. They are even now allowing reels on the planes going thru security in Nassau on the way home. They were not allowing this last year.

Swalt
03-26-2009, 08:35 PM
Vince,
That would be nice.
Is that policy now, as if anything in the Bahamas could be policy, or did just a couple make it through that had reels in their carryon?
As one that had to check my reels one time I am pretty wary.
Walt

Vince
03-27-2009, 07:33 AM
I made it thru personally in February and March, as did some of my companions. No one that brought their reels thru had a problem that I am aware of.

I believe it's technically USA TSA that you go thru to get out of Nassau, so maybe they finally conformed to what they are doing in the USA.

JR SPEY
03-27-2009, 09:01 AM
Actually, you go through both Bahamian security and TSA security at Nassau. Recently, they've switched it around so that now one goes through Bahamian security first. I found them to be much more lax this year probably because they know that anything inappropriate will be dealt with by the TSA people. Maybe it was just the time that I was there, but Bahamian security seemed as uninterested in Nassau this year as it usually is at Congotown or Androstown. That's not to say that someone won't try to stop you with a loaded reel, just that I think it's far less likely these days.

Swalt
03-27-2009, 09:05 AM
I made it thru personally in February and March, as did some of my companions. No one that brought their reels thru had a problem that I am aware of.

I believe it's technically USA TSA that you go thru to get out of Nassau, so maybe they finally conformed to what they are doing in the USA.

Thanks. I asked them, when they told me I had to check my reels, if they went by TSA rules and they said they did but they would not budge on having to check them. Even when showed a copy of the TSA rules concerning reels. Hopefully they really are now.

LeeG
03-27-2009, 12:06 PM
No trouble bringing rods, reels and flies down to Bahamas as carry on and I checked the reels on the way home. They checked the foil wrapped coconut tarts but let them on when I agreed that nothing is better than a homemade, still warm coconut tart. TSa did prohibit my bringing a 4 oz container of sunscreen from coming through carry on and the cleaner for the glasses has to be put into a zip lock bag.

mugsy
04-07-2009, 01:35 AM
Went through Nassau in December and again in March and didn't have any problems or questions about reels as I have in the past. If fact, the security people were much more pleasant than in the past. However, my checked bag didn't make it out of Nassau coming home. A Bahamian baggage official called me a few days after I returned home to let me know the bag was there (with no checked baggage tag) and that they would send it on. Well they did - but it went to London, England which isn't particularly close to Montana. I finally got the bag about two weeks after I got home. The airlines were clueless and had no idea where the bag was. I had to tell them it was still in Nassau.