Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Question 1st time air travel with firearm

    MrsPAcarrier just checked a firearm in Tampa to Pittsburgh on Spirit. Everything was in order as we did our homework in advance.

    At the counter, the ticket person acknowledged what my wife said, then just put the bag on the rollers with all the other baggage.

    No TSA inside-the-bag check, and more concerning, no declaration paperwork.

    Is this normal? If it's not, do we have any recourse, or should we have done something differently?

    Any idea what she should expect coming back from Pittsburgh to Tampa?

    Thanks in advance.
    Ragged Hole Manufacturer

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    Glockin, Pennsylvania
    (Montgomery County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    I wouldn't be too worried. It would be on them if they were supposed to give you declaration paperwork and didn't. You did your part by declaring it. In my experience, I've always filled out a tag and signed it. But then everything varies with airlines and airports (tag on outside of pistol case vs inside). Further, airports have vastly different procedures for bag handling from there.

    San Antonio has you accompany TSA while they inspect your bag. I had the agent tell me I couldn't have loaded mags in my gun case and I stood my ground because I knew you could and his supervisor confirmed. In Denver they have you walk with airport staff to the TSA X-RAY room to confirm everything is good. In Philly they just suggest waiting for 15 min by the ticket counter in case TSA finds an issue (never had that happen since I have a good case and follow procedure). In Palm Beach they just take it and say enjoy your flight.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    That's great to know. Thanks for your feedback.

    Sorry I can't rep you. It says I need to spread some around first.
    Last edited by PAcarrier; December 28th, 2019 at 06:13 PM.
    Ragged Hole Manufacturer

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    In the can, Pennsylvania
    (Montgomery County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by PAcarrier View Post
    That's great to know. Thanks for your feedback.

    Sorry I can't rep you. It says I need to spread some around first.
    I got him for you.
    Please post a follow up so we know how it turned out.
    How can you have any cookies if you don't drink your milk?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    (Allegheny County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by PAcarrier View Post
    MrsPAcarrier just checked a firearm in Tampa to Pittsburgh on Spirit. Everything was in order as we did our homework in advance.

    At the counter, the ticket person acknowledged what my wife said, then just put the bag on the rollers with all the other baggage.

    No TSA inside-the-bag check, and more concerning, no declaration paperwork.

    Is this normal? If it's not, do we have any recourse, or should we have done something differently?

    Any idea what she should expect coming back from Pittsburgh to Tampa?

    Thanks in advance.
    I recently flew out of PIT on SWA with firearms for the first time not too long ago (specifically, 1 shotgun, 1 revolver, 1 handgun, and 1 suppressor). They had me sign the declaration form, then take the case over to the oversized luggage area, where a TSA agent asked me to unlock the case. He looked inside real quick, did a quick swab, and sent me on my way.

    It was honestly one of the smoothest, least troubling flight experiences I've ever had, with or without guns.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Bucks County, Pennsylvania
    (Bucks County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by TooBigToFit View Post
    I recently flew out of PIT on SWA with firearms for the first time not too long ago (specifically, 1 shotgun, 1 revolver, 1 handgun, and 1 suppressor). They had me sign the declaration form, then take the case over to the oversized luggage area, where a TSA agent asked me to unlock the case. He looked inside real quick, did a quick swab, and sent me on my way.

    It was honestly one of the smoothest, least troubling flight experiences I've ever had, with or without guns.
    “Quick swab” of what?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    In the can, Pennsylvania
    (Montgomery County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by Manxdriver View Post
    “Quick swab” of what?
    Usually hands, for chem residue.
    How can you have any cookies if you don't drink your milk?

  8. #8
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    Dec 2011
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    Palm Coast, Florida
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by Berncly View Post
    I got him for you.
    Please post a follow up so we know how it turned out.
    Thank you for that, and I will let you know how it goes. She lands in 20, and returns from PIT to TPA next Friday. Hope it goes smooth, especially since it's my gun she's carrying.
    Ragged Hole Manufacturer

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
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    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    (Allegheny County)
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by Manxdriver View Post
    “Quick swab” of what?
    The case.

    Which, I might add, gave no complications. Even though I was reloading the night before and I had a box of reloads in there.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    Palm Coast, Florida
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    Default Re: 1st time air travel with firearm

    Quote Originally Posted by TooBigToFit View Post
    I recently flew out of PIT on SWA with firearms for the first time not too long ago (specifically, 1 shotgun, 1 revolver, 1 handgun, and 1 suppressor). They had me sign the declaration form, then take the case over to the oversized luggage area, where a TSA agent asked me to unlock the case. He looked inside real quick, did a quick swab, and sent me on my way.

    It was honestly one of the smoothest, least troubling flight experiences I've ever had, with or without guns.
    Wow! That's a lot of hardware. Maybe that's why they were easy on you.

    Thanks for the info and confidence. She was nervous about it until she did a bunch of research. Then when they didn't have any paperwork or TSA check, she got a bit concerned.
    Ragged Hole Manufacturer

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