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Flying with Delta

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by aguyindallas, Mar 4, 2005.

  1. aguyindallas

    aguyindallas Well-Known Member

    Well, tomorrow I embark on my journey to pick up my Used Police Interceptor (as seen in the roundtable).

    I will be flying to Cleveland, departing from Dallas and changing planes in Atlanta. This will be on Delta.

    Has anyone got any RECENT experience flying with firearms on Delta. I have their policy, printed and in hand, but you just never know when you will get an idiot at the counter. Anyone have any experiences to share?

    Follow this thread for updates on the trip back in the interceptor,and to keep it gun related, I will be either carrying my SigPro, or perhaps XD40.
  2. Henry Bowman

    Henry Bowman Senior Member

    My most recent experience with Delta and a firearm is a few months old. However, since you will be flying out of Texas, and driving out of anti-gun northern OH, it should not be a big deal at all.
  3. Erich

    Erich Well-Known Member

    This is a bit over three months old.

    Just before Christmas, my wife and I travelled to Florida for a week. Via Delta.

    In NM on the trip out, the check-in desk agent (an unpleasant woman) just about choked when I checked in my Glock 26 and mags. She insisted that the locked gun case not be locked, so that TSA could look through it. I pointed out that federal law required otherwise and locked them.

    The agent then made me hang around the check-in until TSA got through with it. TSA wanted to look through the case. Okay, have them come out and get the key. No, the gate agent wanted me to give her the key. I pointed out that this would be a violation of federal law, and she got shrill about how she had a security clearance. Finally I just said, "Fine," gave her the keys, and she took them back to TSA.

    TSA cleared the gun, and the agent gave me my keys back. I was irritated, but air travel pretty much just sucks, so what are you going to do? I decided not to let it ruin my day - I'd just let it go instead of trying to get her in trouble - and flew to FL. Our bags arrived; the gun was inside. Everything was great.

    FL was great. I was happy to have an non-resident permit.

    On the trip back on December 23rd, the gate agent was a pleasant man who thought the Glock was cool. He advised me to hang around until TSA got through checking the bags, and then let me know when it was done. We flew back home.

    Our bags were lost in that "Delta lost everybody's baggage" day. I was unhappy, but what are you going to do? Air travel pretty much sucks (although Southwest has never lost my bags - knock wood). The lost bags deal was a lot worse for all the people who were arriving on ski vacations and who'd checked their overcoats at the insistence of the Delta personnel - they found themselves in 15° F weather in shirt sleeves. Bet that was a fun time in Taos! :rolleyes:

    We went home after Delta promised to deliver the luggage first thing the next day. They even prioritized ours, since I whined about needing some clothes (shoes, actually) for Christmas Eve dinner. They gave us an 800 number to call.

    I started calling the 800 number at 6 a.m. (Remember, this was the day Delta lost everyone's luggage, tho no one knew that at the time.) I couldn't get through. In fact, I couldn't get through ever, all day and into the night. I did jump online to learn that the luggage had arrived at the ABQ airport (about 20 miles from our house) at around 1 p.m. I figured, I shouldn't go to the airport to get it, because they'll be delivering it, and I want to be here.

    And I had to stick around the house all day, waiting for the Delta idiots who never came. Eventually, it was time to go to our Christmas Eve dinner. We left a note on our gate ("Leave the luggage with the next-door neighbor") and went to dinner. Although I was starting to seriously stress about the gun lost in the luggage, we managed to have a nice time.

    At 9 p.m. we came back. No luggage. I started to lose it, and started to drink whisky. My wife said, "Enough with these idiots; I'm going to the airport." She does: the luggage (with my gun in it) is standing unguarded next to a conveyer belt, with a bunch of other luggage. An ocean of luggage, in fact. My wife searches for five minutes before she finds a Delta employee to tell that she's taking the luggage - they say, "Yeah, we just processed those."

    She brings the luggage home an hour after she left. The suitcases have big "V.I.P." stickers on them (I guess this was the alleged prioritization), and my gun's inside, intact and happy.

    I kiss my wife and say, "My hero!" (Remember, I've been drinking the whole time she's been gone.) I realize that it's a good thing that I'm not a tourist on a ski weekend in Taos, because I'm pretty sure those poor slobs never got to hit the slopes over Christmas.

    So . . . travelling on Delta? Good luck - hopefully it will work out fine for you. But remember, air travel sucks. :cuss:
  4. jwoods

    jwoods Member

    Delta Flyer

    I flew Delta in November from Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Of all my firearm check-in experiences this was the worst. I travel relatively light, one carry-on, one check, plus the pistol in a Pelican case. Normal procedure is declare, inspect, scan, and go. Every other airline I've flown (AmericaWest and American) have you walk behind the counter with an airline official (not TSA). They have me unlock the case present the pistol, slide open clip out, for inspection.
    Then I relock the box continue checking baggage and getting boarding passes then take the firearm to TSA checkpoint. Once you've told them that you have a firearm, they scan it then give you the thumbs up. (Usually when you tell them you have a firearm you get bumped up.) Delta however had their desk personnel do the inspecting in view of the sensitive public behind me. Then the guy tells me I have to stow the hard box in my duffle. It took several minutes and a manager's phone call somewhere to explain to them that wasn't neccesary, as I had already mentioned. Then the whole phone call game started again when they tried to tell me I had to store the ammunition in a seperate bag! Again after I had told them what their policies are! Finally everything went as it should. I was cleared by TSA and departed.

    I can't say if things would be different with a more experienced clerk or if Delta is just a pain in the ass, but that's my Delta story.


    good luck
  5. bamawrx

    bamawrx Well-Known Member

    The TSA dudes gave me heck at San Ant, TX airport. Be sure your ammo is in the factory ammo box (NOT LOOSE) and mags unloaded. Of yeah, no more cig lighters either. Post some pics of mllnja when you get her.
  6. Jeff OTMG

    Jeff OTMG Well-Known Member

    I flew Delta in January from Salt Lake City to Houston. No problem in SLC. Declared to the counter personel, showed unloaded, ammo in factory box, same case as firearm, signed declaration card, card locked in hardcase, hardcase in suitcase, notified TSA, cleared to go to gate.
  7. aguyindallas

    aguyindallas Well-Known Member

    Well, I made it past Delta and TSA checks just fine declaring my SigPro in carry on luggage. The flight to Atlanta where I am changing planes after about a 1 hour layover was fine. It was a comletely full flight, but fine. I had good conversation with the guy next to me most of the way. I will keep ya updated, for anyone who cares or is following my Used Police Interceptor pickup trip.

    I posted this from my Blackberry.

    Updates to come.
  8. jamz

    jamz Well-Known Member

    I've never checked a gun with them, but last Delta flight I was in about a year ago, the aircrat was absolutely filthy, and they never bothered with prelanding checks for the passengers.

    I'd rather take pretty much any other airline.

  9. Mannlicher

    Mannlicher Well-Known Member

    end of January, I flew FtLauderdale to Cinncy. No problems with the TSA or Delta. Low key check in, cartridges in one bag, pistol and mags in another.
  10. planecrazy69

    planecrazy69 Member

    Hey jamz , take it easy on the big D. :what: I'm an employee there and with everyone wanting to fly for .99 everywhere in the world something has to give. If you look at safety, we are at the top. I believe it's getting better though. LOL
  11. cxm

    cxm Well-Known Member

    Delta Has Become a Third World Airline

    I used to fly Delta in preference to all others. It saddens me to say that over the past few years it has gone from world class to third world quality.

    After about 18 mo of not flying because of surgery I felw again just before Xams. Delta lost my luggage from Atlanta to Tampa... took nearly 24 hours to get it back... and it was not in the "everyone looses their luggage" program either.

    OTOH, American was still pretty good and has a lot more leg room too... Delta has shrunk the leg room to non-existant these days... if you are taller than 5'1" the seats are way too close together.

    After being a Delta customer for over 30 years and half a million miles that was my last Delta flight.

  12. ReadyontheRight

    ReadyontheRight Well-Known Member

    I agree with the above suggestion to definitely keep your ammo in factory boxes. I had quite the problem with TSA once with a few loose rounds rattling in a range bag. Not pretty.

    Also, make sure you stay within the weight limits or you will have to pay extra. You're probably OK with handguns, but guns and ammo can get pretty heavy quickly, and the weight limits are pretty low.

    Hey -- If you're going to Ohio, you should think about hitting the CMP and checking out the Garands! www.odcmp.com

    Enjoy the trip and the cool new vehicle!
  13. HighVelocity

    HighVelocity Well-Known Member

    That's pretty cool. :cool: I am anxious to hear that you landed safely and retrieved your luggage with your gun still in it.
  14. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

    I fly American out of Dallas all the time, never any questions about checking the firearm, but they get weird about the ammo and the box it's in for some reason. I tried a nice heavy lockable plastic ammo carrier once, and the gate agent insisted that I use the flimsy cardboard box it came in, so I had to go back out to the car and find an empty box. Thought that was kinda dumb but oh well......
  15. Sylvilagus Aquaticus

    Sylvilagus Aquaticus Well-Known Member

    SWMBO and I flew from Dallas/Love to San Antonio and back 2 weeks ago. I've been procrastinationg posting the events r/t SWA and TSA on that trip, but I sure felt better in SAT with my P229 than I would have felt without it.

    Stay tuned, I'll write out the details before the weekend is over.

  16. jamz

    jamz Well-Known Member

    Sorry planecrazy, I call 'em like I see 'em, but I will insist that it is only one man's single experience. I won't say that all Delta flights are run the same way. Nevertheless, it definitely colored my own personal perceptions of the airline. :)

  17. westex

    westex Well-Known Member

    Maybe a little off the subject but can anyone give me any possible reasoning about ammo being in the manufactures cardboard boxes. Never made a lick of sense to me but I don't work for the government.
  18. Jeff OTMG

    Jeff OTMG Well-Known Member

    Regarding ammo in factory boxes ONLY. It isn't true under federal law. Print it, carry it, I do.


    [CITE: 49CFR175.10]
    PART 175_CARRIAGE BY AIRCRAFT--Table of Contents
    Subpart A_General Information and Regulations
    Sec. 175.10 Exceptions.
    (a) This subchapter does not apply to:
    (5) Small-arms ammunition for personal use carried by a crewmember
    or passenger in his baggage (excluding carry-on baggage) if securely
    packed in fiber, wood or metal boxes, or other packagings specifically
    designed to carry small amounts of ammunition.

    I have seen some Southwest agents allow the magazines to be loaded and not inserted into the pistol because they are considered 'packagings specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition', which they are, but I never try to sell that idea. The plastic MTM ammo boxes DO comply with the federal regs. That I would argue.
  19. Erich

    Erich Well-Known Member

    +1 for Jeff OTMG's comments. :)
  20. Trebor

    Trebor Well-Known Member

    You know, I'm at the point that whenever I fly somewhere where I can legally posses a pistol, I'm going to bring one. Just so I can keep my darned luggage locked the whole way. If I don't have a valid carry permit in that state, it might just be a little Jennings .22 or something since I'd have to leave it secured in the vehicle or the hotel, but it'll be something.

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