Flying with trad gear...

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Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2011 9:50 pm
Real Name: Duncan
Location: Western Cape

Flying with trad gear...

Post by Straightplumb » Sat Apr 27, 2013 3:23 pm

Hello All

I'm Flying to joberg for the tradathon, what can I and can't I travel with. how do I travel with my rack?
Has anyone done this before and how do you explain to people what climbing gear is?

Thanks for the help
Don't cut that which you can untie. Traddies are hard core, they can hang on their nuts.

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Real Name: Brandon
Location: western cape

Re: Flying with trad gear...

Post by smityb » Sat Apr 27, 2013 7:35 pm

I recently flew up to Joburg with my trad gear as carry on luggage. the security raised an eyebrow when they saw my bag going through the scanning machine but didn't seem to mind. just make sure you take off things like knives or maybe nut-picks.

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Real Name: Christopher Leach

Re: Flying with trad gear...

Post by ChrisLeach » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:27 pm


This is always something I stress about before a climbing trip, I have had climbing gear in my carry on a couple times as well, but usually, especially with international flights, I pack my racks into one of those strong black Addis containers, secured with cable ties and a padlock where I've drilled through the lid. I then stick on a fragile sticker and claim it as Sporting Goods. This is really useful as the container can weigh up to 20kg. And best of all, there is no additional cost for a second baggage item when claimed as Sporting Goods.
Just remember to carry spare cable ties, because occasionally Security wants to know what is in the dodgy looking black box.

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Re: Flying with trad gear...

Post by BAbycoat » Thu May 02, 2013 7:23 am

Beware carry-on: My climbing buddy had 'biners confiscated from carry-on at CDG because they could be used as knuckle-dusters.

and beware check-in: Flying back from Arapiles last night, the haul-bag with our gear arrived on the carousel 45 mins after all the other luggage. We were wondering whether a genetically kleptomaniac Antipodeal had taken an interest in its contents.

(... oh, and an ex of mine had her designer check-in baggage slashed on CPT-JNB a few years ago.)

Either way, you flys with gear and you takes the risks. I'd suggest an inconspicuous, hard, sealed container, checked into the hold. And confirm insurance with your airline ... gear is replaceable, make sure it's not at your expense.

If baggage allowance is a problem, suggest packing your ropes in carry-on (they're soft, and far less likely to draw attention) and putting all metal in the hold.

hth ...

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Real Name: Justin Lawson
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Re: Flying with trad gear...

Post by Justin » Thu May 02, 2013 7:50 am

BAbycoat wrote:If baggage allowance is a problem, suggest packing your ropes in carry-on (they're soft, and far less likely to draw attention) and putting all metal in the hold.
I've traveled to Europe/States with a sport rack. I've heard that ropes are not allowed as carry on (because you can use it to tie people etc). When we went through the (hand) luggage check in Germany they did stop the conveyor belt for the sport rack. Luckily one of the security guys was a climber and cleared us with no problems.
This was also at the time when Anthrax (in the form of white powder) was being mailed to people in the States... luckily they didn't get to our chalk bags!

WRT extra weight - Check with your airline if you can get a 'sport equipment' allowance.

From the posts above, it really seems to depend on who is on duty and what their mood might be!?
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