View Full Version : Air Travel with Ukes

06-11-2014, 02:28 AM
I saw a couple of old threads on this topic, I was curious if anyone had taken a uke on a plane lately, and if so how they did it and how the airlines reacted.

06-11-2014, 04:53 AM
Always take my uke as one of my carry-ons, I try to be first to get good storage above me & EASY to get to when leaving with every one shoving etc. Couple time I took a double CONCERT bag with no trouble. I try & make it NOT obvious when passing ticket agent

06-11-2014, 05:31 AM
I took a concert uke on Alaska Airlines earlier this year as a carry-on. No problems.

06-11-2014, 05:38 AM
I travelled with a uke about 3 weeks ago and everything went well. The plane crew treated it as an overhead luggage.

06-11-2014, 06:28 AM
I saw a couple of old threads on this topic, I was curious if anyone had taken a uke on a plane lately, and if so how they did it and how the airlines reacted.

Every airline has different rules so it's best to check with the airline, and also gate agents just do whatever they want.

Traveling for UWC VI this year I flew one way on American and the other on United. American's policy says your instrument IS your only carryon, so I forked over $25 to check my bag. On the way home I checked no luggage because United lets you carry your instrument in addition to your carryon. Then I got bumped over to an American flight and the agent told me not to worry, and the agent on the next leg said nothing.

Now my policy is going to be uke+carry on bag and hope for the best (also they don't charge you to gate check a bag.

06-11-2014, 06:57 AM
I recently went on a college tour with my oldest. I was planning on meeting up with a couple of my previously unmet UU buddies in Atlanta, the last stop on the tour, so I took my tenor in a hard case. No problem with the uke on any flight until the last one to Atlanta, which was on a commuter flight. They handed me a gate check tag as I walked onto the gangway, which I just jammed in my pocket. I carried the uke on, partially obscured by my body, and put it in an overhead. And no problem.

hawaii 50
06-11-2014, 07:01 AM
check out post # 4


06-11-2014, 07:56 AM
Just flew to Cedar Rapids via Chicago from Albany, NY round trip on United Commuters - carried my Donaldson in an Ameritage hard shell case. It fit in the overheads no problem (we were in boarding group 2, so early on, AND we buy seats forward of the wing.) All of the flights were full, as in 0 open seats.

No problems, no hassles, and nothing but positive comments.

Although the one other passenger in the Cedar Rapids waiting area who had a uke just glanced at me, then turned away while I was playing mine in the waiting area...

I wonder why?


06-11-2014, 08:13 AM
I flew from Des Moines to San Juan in April and flew back in may. I stuffed my concert uke, which was in a soft bag, in my suitcase and checked it. I don't like dragging stuff around. It came through both times just fine. I make that trip quite often, and I'll probably do it that way in the future.

06-11-2014, 08:17 AM
Just came home on Monday from flying 3 different airlines on this trip. No hassle from any of them and actually they let me put it under the seat because I was nervous about overhead crush since all flights were quite full. I usually stow my important stuff, passport, wallet, etc in the outside pocket of my uke bag just in case they want me to check something when boarding and I wrap my uke with one change of clothes for uke protection and in case something goes wrong with checked baggage.

06-12-2014, 04:46 AM
I take mine as a carry-on; I've stored it under the seat and in the overhead compartment depending on how full the compartments are. This might be more than you need to know, but my usual travel set-up is a carry-on-size wheelie bag, a soft bag (i.e., purse) for my laptop and misc. stuff, and my uke in its gig bag. I don't check anything. I cross my fingers and hope that when I get to the gate they'll be inviting gate-checked bags; in that case, I gate-check the suitcase and then I take on the uke and the purse with me to my seat. If they're not gate-checking bags, I take my wallet, charger, book, whatever else, and put it in the gig bag and put the purse into the suitcase. Then I've only got two bags: the gig bag and the suitcase. I put the suitcase in the overhead and have the gig bag by me.

It helps that all of these items are black, as is my coat, so it's possible to get on the airplane with all three items kind of blending into one another and not get busted for having three carry-ons.

06-12-2014, 05:13 AM
If it's a problem you should be able to hand it to the flight attendants at the front of the plane while boarding. Lots of people take guitars and give it to them, and that's a lot bigger than an ukulele case. They just store it down below and pull it out first, then you grab it while exiting the plane. Be careful not to do this in areas where it might sit outside in extreme weather for a short while (like Phoenix or something)