View Full Version : Hawaiian Airlines and Ukulele carry on

04-28-2014, 10:05 AM
Anyone had a problem with taking ukes on board. My Tenor case measures more than 45 "linear" inches. I have never had any probs in past

04-28-2014, 10:12 AM
No, never. I fly Hawaiian Airlines very frequently (mainland and interisland) and I have never had a problem - and I always have a tenor case with me.

hawaii 50
04-28-2014, 10:31 AM
Check out post #7 on this thread...


04-28-2014, 12:32 PM
Check out post #7 on this thread...


Here's the text of that post. But go to the thread anyway (and read all the posts), because it appears to be one of the more recent threads on this topic.

This topic comes up every so often and I try repost the following post I made a couple of years ago. I have a unique insight into this topic. Hope this helps:

As an Airline Pilot based in Honolulu I couldn't resist adding my 2 cents. I bring my Kala travel uke with me EVERYWHERE. I often jumpseat on airlines other then my own so I have lots of experience in this area. Here is my advice:
1 - NEVER, EVER check or gate check your ukulele - NEVER
2- TSA - The rules state that you can carry on one instrument in addition to your carry on and personal item. They don't always know the rules, they are poorly trained and are performing an unskilled task for a meanial amount. Therefor you can surmise the level of employee they recruite. Arguing does no good, simply ask to speak to their supervisor and tell them to refer to TSA.gov website section pertaining to: Transporting Musical Instruments, then politly explain the rules.
3 - Kindness and niceness go along way, however the gate agent (the person who collects the tickets) is your biggest obstacle. If the gate agent attempts to make you gate check your uke tell her, "I carry it on all the time, if it doesn't fit I would be happy to gate check it", however don't forget rule one.
4 - Now that you have gotten past the gate agent there are two more obsticles. First, if you are carrying something bigger then a soprano there may be a lack of overhead bin space. The only way you have to combat this is to be ready to que up as soon as the gate agent calls ready to board. Boarding is usually done by seating sections, one first etc. (unless your flying on southwest) be the first in your section to board to ensure overhead bin space.
5 - If there is no overhead bin space this brings us the next obstacle, the flight attendant. If there is no more overhead space there are several options. There are always coat closets, even on the smallest planes. On some of the smaller planes the coat closet is reserved for the crew. Again kindness goes along way. The crew wants to get the plane out on time and not get blamed for a delay. Ask nicely if you can place it in the coat closet, if they tell you the closet is full or there is no closet ask if you can place it in the crew's closet. If they still refuse, tell them on the last flight the Captain placed the uke in his closet and ask if they will ask this captain if he will do the same. As a Captain I always accomodate instruments, even full size guitars. If you still don't have any luck, look for open seats on the plane. An instruments may be place in an empty seat as long as: 1)The case has some kind of handle to secure the instrument to the seat with the seat belt 2) The instrument is not placed in an exit row 3) The instrument is not so tall as to block any signs (no smoking, fasten seat belt etc.)
If after using all this information you still are being asked to check or gate check you uke, ask your self this question, is the health of my uke more important then the time it would take to wait for the next flight. If you value your uke ask to be put on the next flight, you will probably have a different gate agent and a different flight attendant. I hope this helps all you traveling musicians. If you have any more question feel free to send me a private message.

04-28-2014, 12:42 PM
From http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information/musical-instruments :

Musical Instruments

You may bring musical instruments as carry-on or as checked baggage. To help passengers who are traveling with instruments, we partnered with musical organizations around the country to understand the challenges of transporting musical instruments, and we recommend the following.

Check with your airline prior to your flight to ensure your instrument meets the size requirements for their aircraft.

Pack brass instruments in your checked baggage.

Bring your stringed instruments, within carrier size limitations, as carry-on items.

If you have an instrument in your checked baggage, include short written instructions, where a security officer will notice them, for handling and repacking your instrument. Make sure these instructions are very clear and understandable to someone with no musical background.

Carrying Instruments Through Screening Checkpoints

You may carry one (1) musical instrument in addition to 1 carry-on and 1 personal item through the screening checkpoint. This is a TSA Screening Policy. Airlines may or may not allow the additional carry-on item on their aircraft. Please check with your airline before you arrive at the airport.

Security officers must x-ray or physically screen your instrument before it can be transported on an aircraft.

Security officers will handle musical instruments very carefully and will allow you to be as involved as possible in any physical screening.

If security officers cannot clear the instrument through the security checkpoint as a carry-on item, you should transport the instrument and checked baggage instead.
Instruments As Checked Baggage

You may bring musical instruments as checked baggage as long as they fit within the size and weight limitations of the airline you are taking.

We encourage you to stay with your instrument while security officers screen it to make sure it is repacked properly.

Owners should be present when an instrument is removed from its case for screening. For this reason, musicians are advised to add at least 30 minutes to the airline's recommended arrival window when checking their instrument.

04-28-2014, 12:54 PM
I just carried on my Moore Bettah between the Mainland and Oahu and the puddle-jumper from Oahu to Lanai with no issues whatsoever on Hawaiian. No one batted an eye, other than to ask if I was going to be in-flight entertainment.

Take your uke and enjoy. Travel with your ukes without fear! That is the best advice I can give.

04-28-2014, 01:04 PM
Good News, from all. May God Bless

04-29-2014, 02:39 PM
I hauled my fathers' Pono Tenor all the way to Utah...for his mainland playing delight...no issues...Hawaiian should have no issues either! Tenors will make it...Concerts and sopranos better...but they should fit unless it is a one bag/row bin... most are two.

hawaii 50
05-04-2014, 10:10 AM
Aloha Howie....
glad your beautiful Kamaka made it to Hawaii with no problems...

nice to meet you...hope you had a nice lesson with Corey...
have a nice/safe vacation..

05-04-2014, 11:14 AM
Likewise Hawaii 50. Corey is fantastic. We are squeezing in 2 more lessons prior to my leaving this Thursday! He's awesome !