Can I Bring My Own Musical Instruments to the Event? - A Comprehensive Guide

A comprehensive guide on bringing your own musical instruments on flights - what you need to know about size & weight limits, fees & safety requirements.

Can I Bring My Own Musical Instruments to the Event? - A Comprehensive Guide

Airlines will accept musical instruments on their passenger flights, either as hand luggage or as checked baggage. The President of the United States manages the operations of the executive branch of the Government through executive orders. The President of the United States communicates information on holidays, commemorations, special celebrations, trade and policies through Proclamations. The President of the United States issues other types of documents, including, but not limited to, memos, notices, determinations, letters, messages, and orders.If you have questions for the agency that issued the current document, please contact the agency directly.

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With the exception of certain assistance devices for people with disabilities, all passengers and crew members have upper compartments or storage space under the seats for their hand luggage, on a first-come, first-served basis.Consequently, airlines are not required to remove the hand luggage of other passengers or crew members that is already in storage to make room for a musical instrument. However, this also means that carriers cannot require passengers to remove their musical instrument that has already been safely stored (e.g., in an overhead bin). This is true even if the space occupied by the musical instrument could accommodate one or more hand luggage items.Since the standard does not require that musical instruments be given priority over other hand luggage, it is recommended that passengers traveling with musical instruments take steps to board before as many passengers as possible to ensure that there is space available to store their instruments safely in the cabin. This includes taking advantage of pre-boarding opportunities offered by some airlines (usually paying a fee).

This rule also states that airlines are prohibited from charging passengers carrying a musical instrument such as hand luggage an additional fee other than the standard fare that airlines impose for hand luggage.By including this requirement in law, Congress clearly intended to require carriers to treat musical instruments in cabin as if they were other types of hand luggage. For example, most airlines' hand luggage programs approved by FAA allow one piece of hand luggage plus a personal item such as handbag or briefcase. If passenger with musical instrument already has these two standard items and musical instrument is third item of hand luggage, that airline may not allow passenger to board aircraft with third hand item. Under federal aviation regulations, no airline can allow passenger to board aircraft with more hand items than allowed under that airline's FAA-approved hand luggage program.

Fees imposed by airlines for any piece of hand luggage will also apply to musical instruments that are carried on board.This would include situation in which airline's hand luggage program approved by FAA allows each passenger two pieces of hand luggage from Start Printed Page 163 but airline charges fee for second piece. If passenger with musical instrument already has one piece of hand luggage (free of charge), airline can charge its standard fare for second piece of hand luggage even if second piece is musical instrument.Since airlines must meet number of safety requirements, it is recommended that passengers who purchase seat for large musical instrument notify airline in advance that seat is being purchased to transport instrument and they follow that airline's policies regarding transporting musical instrument in cabin. Airlines whose hand luggage programs allow for such stowage must ensure their booking agents and airport agents are trained to assign appropriate seats to passenger and instrument to ensure compliance with safety requirements and their crews are trained and have appropriate restraint device to attach instrument to seat.With respect to cost of transporting musical instrument in passenger's seat assuming all safety requirements are met airlines cannot charge passenger more than price of ticket for additional seat for example by adding specific fee for transporting musical instrument. However this does not prevent carriers from charging standard fees for ancillary services.

For example if airlines charge fee for advance assignment of seats and passenger requests advance assignment of seats for him or for instrument airline may charge advance seat assignment fee for each seat assignment. As required by law this rule requires carriers to accept musical instruments in cargo compartment as checked baggage if those instruments meet size and weight limits set out in Section 403 and FAA safety regulations.