Account of Flying with Firearms

Deviant Ollam & Lady Merlin
A trip down to visit family for the holidays went smoothly each way.
PHL --> ORD --> HSV

HSV --> ORD --> PHL

Luggage & Gear
All of our luggage on this trip were Pelican cases and we had our carry pistols (each Walthers now) locked with Abloy locks.


Outbound Travel
Pamela Flynthe from United checked us in quite rapidly, assisted by others. An older fellow from United in a suit looked on. Porter James took our bags back and a mere three minutes later we were all good. We proceeded to passenger screening... me in a Santa hat.

Homebound Travel
Marsha M. from United checked me in at Huntsville's little airport on a Saturday afternoon. It was a slow but smooth process. For whatever reason, the priority lane wasn't being used. The baggaeg screening took rather a long time, however. Ten minutes after my luggage was sent back, Marsha went back to the rear room. Five minutes later, i was watching multiple people walk in and out of the back room. A few minutes later I asked a United worker, Jenny, to find out about my firearm-bearing case. She suggested that I just go to my gate, but i explained that this was not a suitable plan. She went to check and and immediately found out that the luggage had cleared. I was on my way.


Final Details & Thoughts
Small airports have charm but sometimes they just don't cut it for me. This trip home was such a time. After watching a bar employee taking out the trash while simultaneously serving people beers (bottled, but still) and all the INFAX monitors were showing incorrect information. A passenger near me informed me of the correct gate and I was off.


Air Travel Ratings
If you don't have the time or the desire to read the full text of someone's account of air travel, you can simply refer to the rating shown at the conclusion of each portion of that person's journey. The following criteria are used in assigning these ratings...

Four Stars

check-in - no hassle, no delay
screening - in full view, lock and unlock yourself
luggage - all on time and intact

Three Stars
check-in - some delay or mild hassle
screening - somewhat obscured, locking and unlocking yourself or it's done directly in front of you
luggage - all on time and intact

Two Stars
check-in - major delay or major hassle
screening - in a room or area that you could not enter and could barely observe
luggage - luggage opened non-destructively

One Star
check-in - flight missed or passenger delayed from flying, properly packed items denied as luggage
screening - luggage unlocked and opened totally in another area fully removed from you
luggage - destructive entry into luggage and/or tampering with firearms

Zero Stars
This is a special category for outright theft, loss, or damage of firearms during air travel
half-star results are possible... naturally, they involve partial or mitigated problems that somehow fall in-between the above categories