There are few situations more stressful for guitarists than flying. As uncomfortable as flying maybe, with an instrument in hand, stress levels can skyrocket.
Tips for relaxed flying with carbon fiber guitars
Airlines are notorious for damaging guitars in transit. And even if your instrument isn’t damaged, you’ll still feel very uncomfortable during the flight until you pick up your guitar again and check that everything is in order.
The good news is that musicians fly with instruments all the time. More frequently, you can carry guitars on airplanes by the day. Airlines are now better equipped to handle fragile instruments than ever before.
Traveling with carbon fibre guitars: Hand luggage or check-in?
The easiest way to ensure the carbon fiber guitars stay intact during the flight is to take them as carry-on baggage. Carrying your guitar on the plane not only ensures that you’re the only person touching it. It also allows you to find the best possible place to store your instrument stably and safely during the flight.
Traveling with carbon fiber guitars: Check with the airline
Before you fly, check with your airline to see if they allow guitars in carry-on baggage. Many major airlines allow you to stow reasonably sized guitars in the overhead compartment. If there isn’t room in the overhead compartment or your instrument doesn’t fit under the seat, then there is sometimes the option to stow the guitar safely in the cabin crew’s cloakroom as an exception. However, this requires some help from the flight attendants.
Traveling with carbon fibre guitars: Choose a small suitcase size
The size of the guitar case can also affect the ability to take the guitar on a plane. Guitar bags are smaller and lighter. This might help convince skeptical flight attendants that you can take the instrument into the cabin.
Traveling with carbon fibre guitars: Hard-shell suitcases and flight cases
If you’re traveling with an expensive hollow body or acoustic guitar then you should consider investing in a full flight case. They’re bulky and not cheap, but they offer the best possible protection for sensitive instruments on long flights. For professional musicians, this is the safest option.