PDA

View Full Version : Do you Travel with your main uke?



iDavid
04-01-2010, 02:09 AM
I am going from Japan to Washington State and it requires a train ride, and a few planes. I am debating on taking my KoAloha with me or bringing a less expensive uke. I'll be gone for 3 weeks, so I must bring a uke with me.

What do you people do?

Skitzic
04-01-2010, 02:25 AM
Will you be ok if it gets lost / stolen / broken?

I'm going to Canada in a few months, and will not take my 'good' uke. I'll probably take my Dolphin or buy a Flea.

dnewton2
04-01-2010, 02:31 AM
I travel quite often for work and pleasure. For me it depends on a few things for which uke I bring. Mainly where I will be staying. If I travel for work I will be in a hotel and out working most of the day. I leave my uke in the room, and for this reason i would not bring my nicest uke in fear of a maid ripping it off or something. If I travel for fun and am staying in a rental or a friend/families place I will bring my nice uke because I can leave it locked up in a house while I am out. Mode of has very little pull on what uke I bring, because I will be within a few feet of it all the time.

I was thinking about getting a Koaloha as a travel uke recently, my nice uke is a Moore Bettah. So, for me, I guess it all depends on how you feel about where you are staying.

the52blues
04-01-2010, 02:51 AM
I wish I could travel more often for pleasure but lately my travels have included a gig or two along the way so I always take my good electric uke with me. That being said my electric is a Kala Jazz archtop which I am quite happy with but it only cost $300. My gigging guitars cost way more than that and yes, I have had gear stolen more than once and have insurance on all my gear. If I owned a custom job worth a couple grand I may not feel the same way.

GVlog
04-01-2010, 03:04 AM
It sounds like you're anxious about possible damage/loss to your ukulele. Why not insure your instrument? I think a KoAloha is expensive enough to be covered under a personal effect insurance policy.

We have insurance through State Farm for expensive electronics that we travel with: laptops, Blackberries and so on. The coverage is pretty reasonable. An example is $30/yr for a $1300 MacBook. It paid off when it suffered accidental damage of $900 last year. It's been insured for 4 years so we paid a total of $120. That's still a great return on coverage.

Of course, the other option is to just buy an inexpensive travel ukulele.

iDavid
04-01-2010, 04:08 AM
I think I may go for a moderate, more replaceable, travel uke. I have a few, but I am digging the concert size so much that I really don't want to take a soprano with me.... but I may

King FarUke
04-01-2010, 04:26 AM
You could always just treat yourself to a new uke when you get to the states! Just do a litlle research before leaving on where to make a purchse. Then you would not have to worry about all the traveling on the first leg and only have to worry about taking the uke back home. Just make sure you have a good case. With the increased baggage charges, a lot of people take carry-on luggage. On my last flight to Hawaii, the overhead bins became full and a lot of people who had not yet boarded the plane had to have their carry-on luggage checked and stored. Fortunately, you can usually fit most of an uke under the seat.

molokinirum
04-01-2010, 04:44 AM
I always travel with the less expensive uke, my Makala Concert. I would die if something happened to the Kamaka!!!!

Skrik
04-01-2010, 04:50 AM
I'd either take a cheapo ukulele with me, or buy a good one when I got to where I'm going -- especially if it was the States.

haolejohn
04-01-2010, 04:53 AM
I think I may go for a moderate, more replaceable, travel uke. I have a few, but I am digging the concert size so much that I really don't want to take a soprano with me.... but I may

I traveled to Hawaii with my double puka tenor and came back with the Mele and my KoAloha concert. Realistically you have nothing to fear. You will have the uke in a hard case right? So no worries about it getting crushed (I traveled with a gig bag and a hard case). I did buy a mainland concert (factory second for hiking trips) but I hve carried my koaloha concert on multiple motorcycle trips. Just don't check it. I don't take the cheapies on trips b/c they sound like crap and my goal is to infect folks with UAS and there is no better way than with a nice quality sounding ukulele.

Skitzic
04-01-2010, 05:54 AM
I would hesitate taking a solid wood with me. Too many heat and humidity variables for me to feel comfortable with that.

perep
04-01-2010, 05:58 AM
ALWAYS travel with the one I play the most & don't worry. I use a good gig bag, keep it with me, solid koa concert, several hundred dollar item. This year I have a 28 day Med. cruise that I am taking my KOA concert along with my Kala travel soprano in same gig bag-double concert on planes etc. Hope to play while touring Europe & photos with uke at diff. places-so fun. Get some insurance on them, I have 13 ukes & have insurance on all. TAKE your best & enjoy the sound & ease of play, that is WHY you play a good one
perep

mailman
04-01-2010, 06:26 AM
Buy one in the States and then sell it just before you leave. Consider the difference between the purchase price and the sale price a rental fee.....

the52blues
04-01-2010, 07:14 AM
What's the use of having a "main" uke if you "mainly" leave it at home? I don't really understand the mindset of buying a quality uke that you love to play and perform with and then are too afraid to take it with you? I know a guy bought a new Cadillac but uses his Monza because he's afraid someone will scratch the Caddy. Make sense to you? Get insurance and get over it!

mds725
04-01-2010, 07:35 AM
I have a Kala travel ukulele that I bring with me when I travel by air. My primary concern was being able to put the ukulele in my carry-on backpack so I wouldn't have to check the ukulele as luggage, and the thinness of the travel uke makes that a lot easier to do. The kala travel ukuleles sound great and play well, so I don't feel like I'm settling for a second-class ukulele when I fly somewhere. I haven't been on a trip where I travel by a mode other than air recently. If I were, for example, driving to visit a friend in another city, I might instead bring my solid mahogany concert uke.

deach
04-01-2010, 07:53 AM
What's the use of having a "main" uke if you "mainly" leave it at home? ....
This only works if you "mainly" do a lot of traveling.

bbycrts
04-01-2010, 08:24 AM
Main uke - Kanile'a K1-s
The uke I travel with - Lanikai LK-1s

They're about the same...but I paid less for the Lanikai (it's also the uke I have in my drawer at work).

Skitzic
04-01-2010, 08:27 AM
I don't travel with anything that I wouldn't use as a weapon in the event of the zombie apocalypse. While I don't have a super expensive uke (yet), I would not use my Lanikai to club a zombie. Therefore if it takes me more than 2 hours to get wherever I'm going the Lanikai stays home and the Cordoba or the Dolphin comes with me.

But that's me...and I believe you can never be too prepared for the zombie apocalypse.

darkwater
04-01-2010, 08:36 AM
I travel with my Fluke if I'm going to be in a place where I can play acoustically. If I have to be quiet or for after hours it's the Eleuke with phones.

SailQwest
04-01-2010, 09:22 AM
When we do our hurricane season whirlwind tour of the States each summer/fall, we always take our "main" ukes (a concert and a tenor in separate gig bags). Modes of transport typically include boat, dinghy, golf cart, car, and bus, not to mention numerous flights. We've even taken them with us on an ATV. We stay at hotels, motels, b&b's, rental cabins, time shares, and with friends and family during that time.

On flights, our carry-on luggage consists of concert uke, tenor uke, cat (in mesh carrier), and backpack. Rich stows the ukes overhead (and keeps an eye out for other people putting their luggage overhead). The cat and backpack go under the seats in front of us.

I take my Risa stick in my checked bag, and we have also travelled with our Eleukes in our checked luggage. We've never had a problem anywhere, although TSA is always very suspicious of my harmonicas... ;)

molokinirum
04-01-2010, 09:30 AM
....The cat and backpack go under the seats in front of us...



Jasmine has to sit under the seats???? She does not even get her own seat??????? WTF???? Poor Jasmine!! (LOL)

boundless
04-01-2010, 09:38 AM
I've always taken the risk and brought my best with me. When I traveled with the guitar instead, I've had a couple of episode of case damage when I checked it, and since I can't always be sure I can bring the guitar on board, I don't even try anymore. I DO, however, bring the uke with me if I'm sure it's never out of my posession. Of course, I only have a soft case, so I wouldn't even CONSIDER checking it, but even if I did have a hardshell I probably wouldn't check it.

SailQwest
04-01-2010, 10:04 AM
Jasmine has to sit under the seats???? She does not even get her own seat??????? WTF???? Poor Jasmine!! (LOL)

It doesn't seem right, does it?!? Especially considering what the airline charges for her to travel with us!

wickedwahine11
04-01-2010, 10:24 AM
I always take a uke with me. And it is always my favorite of the moment. I used to take my Kanile'a, then my Kamaka, and now I'm bringing the KoAloha with me to Hawaii next week. I always use a hard case, and I never, ever check it. I have never had a problem, and never regretted it. I know they are expensive, but to me they are meant to be played, not just displayed on my wall at home, so whichever is my current fave is the one I travel with. That way I never wish I had it as I play a cheaper, less loved alternative.

guitharsis
04-01-2010, 11:02 AM
Away from home and my Kamaka and KoAlohas now. Brought a Lehua soprano with me and ended up trading it in on a KoAlana concert and then went back to the shop and got a KoAlana soprano too. Don't have to worry about damage and actually really like the tone and playability of the KoAlanas. Will be interesting when I get back home to A/B them with the KoAlohas. On a different kind of trip, I would take one of my KoAlohas or my Kamaka with me.

Leigh
04-01-2010, 11:02 AM
I travel a fair bit and originally started with a travel guitar but it was still to big for 'carry on' luggage so I bought a Mahalo Les Paul sporano 'cos it fits inside my suitcase. It was relatively cheap, sounds and plays well. Not had any problems at airports or with damage (or with other hotel guests!).

cheers, Leigh

arashi_nero
04-01-2010, 11:21 AM
I've always taken the risk and brought my best with me. When I traveled with the guitar instead, I've had a couple of episode of case damage when I checked it, and since I can't always be sure I can bring the guitar on board, I don't even try anymore. I DO, however, bring the uke with me if I'm sure it's never out of my posession. Of course, I only have a soft case, so I wouldn't even CONSIDER checking it, but even if I did have a hardshell I probably wouldn't check it.

i have never travelled with my uke, but i could imagine i wouldn't mind taking an expensive uke with me. i've travelled with my bassoon many times and it is a "bigger" case (not as long as a guitar case, tho) and never had problems, but i will never--and i mean never--check in an instrument. i've seen what the airlines have done with my luggage. i'd never let an airline person touch a $1000 uke, let alone my $6000 bassoon.

i've seen bassoonists travel with soft bassoon cases because they're light and pad the instruments pretty well, but i wouldn't trust myself with anything but hard cases. especially when travelling.

Markwell
04-01-2010, 11:33 AM
I flew with my main uke once, but my main uke wasn't anything special (blackMahalo telecaster, with the pickup, cost me about 30).

I would fly with my current main uke (Ohana TK-50G), as I have a hardcase for it, but can't, as the hardcase is too long to be classed as hand-luggage. I wouldn't want to risk it getting United Airlined.

sukie
04-01-2010, 12:24 PM
I have a KoAloha. It stays at home when I travel. I don't want to wreck it. The weird thing is that if I could get Chuck to make me a Moore Bettah, that thing would go with me everywhere. The logic doesn't make sense to me other than that my "perfect" ukulele would need to be played. Go figure.

GrumpyCoyote
04-01-2010, 12:25 PM
I buy 'em to play 'em, so they go where I go. Since I've never had to check a uke (they always fit in the overhead), I don't mind travelling with whatever I need. I don't worry about loss or damage. My only regret is that I sometimes like to take two, but need to adhere to the airline "two carry-ons only" rule.

That said, when I plan to do a lot of foot travel and touring cites (between busses or trains for example) I tend to take lighter ukes (Fluke) in a shoulder bag. But that's just for convienience rather than concern.