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Old 03-13-2016, 02:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Pens on Airlines - TSA Issues

I know there have been scattered comments on this previously, but some more current experiences would be helpful.

Please use this thread for any ACTUAL experiences and how it went.

Current Issue: I would like to take the IAP Collection as a "carry-on" for airline flight, both within the USA, and hopefully to England.

I can transport approximately 40 pens in a custom made "Pelican Case" that will fit into a slightly larger carry-on. The size is not the issue!

There are no "Cartridge-Style/Shell-Casing" pens in the current inventory. But lots of hollow metal tubes, concealed spaces, and a "caretaker" somewhat reluctant to disassemble every pen to non-informed inspectors.


Has anyone had reasonably current experiences with a carry-on of a larger group of pens. Not 2,3-4 in your pocket - an actual "bundle of 10-20-30+."

Questions: How did TSA react? What did they expect you to answer? Any issues? Any outright rejections that this is not allowed? What issues am I missing???

I ask this to avoid going to the airport with an opinion that with an extra 1/2 hr, all inspections will go fine, and it will be allowed; only to find that on any given Tuesday, said Inspector will reject it as a carry-on, insist it be a checked-bag, or hurry to take it back to the car and miss the flight...


... And just to inject some humor (but actually scary serious): My wife was allowed last month to take as a carry-on... Get ready... A GAS MASK!!! An expensive ($600+), high-end, industrial grade mask/shield with full carbon side cartridges rated for exposure to Industrial Chemicals related to PVC formulations as well as Urethanes. Her company paid to have her prescription glasses ground into a secondary inner glass shield, and she didn't want it to be broken in her luggage.

TSA: "Gee let's see... Nope, a gas mask is not listed as a prohibited article, no problem, have a nice flight..." Not to be political (please!), but I bet if her name was Achmed it would not have passed... Or, just like a scarf or baseball cap - she simply wore her gas mask on the plane ; it may not have worked (AKA - RIOT), But "Nancy" was good with her Gas Mask Carry-on...

Back to the issue of transporting the IAP Collection...

I appreciate any current experiences!
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Old 03-13-2016, 03:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Have you thought of calling your nearest airport and making an appointment to talk to a senior member of the TSA to get their opinions and what to say to inspectors if questioned?
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Old 03-13-2016, 03:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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That was my thought Pete, there is something now called TSA precheck that expedites the process somehow, don't know the details but worth checking into for sure. I've read info that doesn't sound like it should be any issue but no personal experience. Let us know!
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Old 03-13-2016, 03:32 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Pete and Warren: I have a TSA appointment this Tuesday for the Fast Pass/Precheck. That is a slam dunk.

I will be asking for the travel issues in addition to the Precheck pass, just not sure I trust "what I will be told" vs "what happens in real life... i.e. 45 minutes before the flight.

Once done, I will update this thread with my experiences.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 03-13-2016, 03:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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I have taken up to a dozen pen and pencils on a flight with no problems, as they went through the x Ray machine. If you remove the case from the carry on and send them through separately, if there is a concern you don't have to dig through your carry on to view them. Curly's suggestion is a good recommendation as well.
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Old 03-13-2016, 03:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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ED: Good suggestion to separate the case for easier x-raying.

This is the case:
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Old 03-13-2016, 05:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Mark,

I flew from Cleveland, Ohio to Florida three times over three years. I had them in a case by themselves. I was stopped once. I'm 99% sure it was just because they wanted to look at them. They asked how soon my plane was leaving. I had come early so five people ended up looking at the pens.

Last response - no problem. Good luck and have a nice trip.

----I had around 30 pens----
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Old 03-13-2016, 07:45 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hubert View Post
Mark,

I flew from Cleveland, Ohio to Florida three times over three years. I had them in a case by themselves. I was stopped once. I'm 99% sure it was just because they wanted to look at them. They asked how soon my plane was leaving. I had come early so five people ended up looking at the pens.

Last response - no problem. Good luck and have a nice trip.

----I had around 30 pens----
Hi Hubert: Thank you for your reflections - That is what I am expecting. Just trying to anticipate any possible glitches. And... If I actually get to England; what hassles may I have to get the collection Home??? I try to plan for the worst, hope for the best, and be prepared for meeting in the middle. Workable hassles are fine; folks need to do their jobs - I do understand that!

Mark
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Old 03-13-2016, 08:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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I fly a lot and experience many different things during security.

Ensure you only have 2 bags for US travel. Many airlines are getting strict about the 2 carry-on rules.

Arrive earlier than 45 minutes before departure if you plan to check a bag. Some airlines have a cut-off of not bags getting checked 45 minutes prior to departure. Check your airline rules.

The TSA- Pre-screen is a great benefit. You essentially have a background check run and assigned a travel ID to use when booking flights. It allows you to go through security with your clothes in tact and your laptop and such still in the bag. Your carry-on may get pulled aside and manually inspected if something strange shows on the screen.

Overseas travel had bans on carry-ons for a while. You may want to check on current policy.

Some regional planes have restricted overheads meaning your checked bags will be gate checked. Be careful what you want gate checked as the bags often get handled pretty rough getting them onto and off the plane.
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Old 03-13-2016, 08:31 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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We took 3 cases of pens including many bolt actions to Alaska and back (Arizona) without any trouble. We carried them on. One of the TSA agents looked at them really hard but in the end her boss came over and shrugged his shoulders and said, "They're pens." Then several came over to admire before shutting the cases back up.
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