View Full Version : Traveling with your army

12-11-2009, 05:09
Ok, so I've never flown anywhere with my army, and I'm off to 'Ard Boyz next weekend in Chicago from California.

Now I know the easy solution is to put your army in a foam army case and check it. However, I've magnetized all my guys and have them in a metal toolbox. It would be awesome if I could leave them in their metal home they love so dearly, and carry them on the airplane with me (its a small toolbox).

Has anyone had any problems with this with TSA? I looked on their website and didn't see anything explicitly against metal in general, or a toolbox not containing tools. Does anyone here have any experience with this?

12-11-2009, 06:03
I'd call the Airlines directly and tell them your intentions. They will give you guidance on how to handle your situation. I've had some unusual situations pop up. It is a GREAT idea to carry your army on your person. If need be - I'd put them in a cardboard box and pack them with their foam that way. Put it on your lap or in the above overhead storage area. Also, be careful on checked baggage as it costs you $15 a bag or more.. They get you all ways now - fuel charge, checked bags, airport facility fee, and so on.

12-11-2009, 06:32
buddy dont even bother! they will view it as a potential weapon, as the tool box is metal. BEsides with all the risks (dropping it, falls out of overhead, etc) you are much better off just putting them into a foam insert case.
And another thing - being a tournment you dont want to run risk that there is even a small breakage - were you going to get paints/glue etc at last minute?

12-11-2009, 07:54
Foam insert and take as carry on. But call the airline AND the airport beforehand in case it will be a security issue - you may have to go through a different security channel.

18-11-2009, 06:38
Ok, so after trying and trying to find a phone number of someone I can talk to at TSA, or the airport who could answer my question, (and getting a generic reply email from TSA that it is always up to the discretion of the TSA agent) I just decided to go there and wait in line. When I showed the security TSA guy my metal toolbox, he said,"Ok, but what is in it?" Once I showed him my army (Chaos Dwarfs - oh ya), he said, "Warhammer?" I couldn't believe this guy totally knew what it was!

After admiring my minis for a bit he assured me that there was nothing wrong with carrying on a metal toolbox with nothing but miniatures inside of it. Go figure? I'll let you know if I have any trouble when it actually comes to it.

18-11-2009, 07:08
I'd suggest cargo and make sure you put some sort of "FRAGILE" notice.

Do NOT put minis in the luggage you give to them to take in the airplane, it gets thrown, crashes on the floor, and can get roughed up in the conveyor belts.

Otherwise the next best thing is to take them as the bag you're allowed to take in the cabin, but I wouldn't suggest that, since they might not let you after they check the contents at the X-ray machine.

18-11-2009, 12:13
Be careful here - if hair pins and nail clippers are banned from hand luggae, then a metal spearman is just as dangerous. I'd check what the rules are for hand luggage items. In UK no scissors or anything is allowed in hand luggage. What one security officer deems safe because it's a wargame and familiar to him, another may deem as a deadly weapon - silly but it may happen, and you may be refused to board - and it will be too late to book into cargo by that time too.

To play safe, I'd pacd them up and put in cargo.

18-11-2009, 16:54
What one security officer deems safe because it's a wargame and familiar to him, another may deem as a deadly weapon.

This is true. I've watched it many times (in more than one country) with my wife's knitting needles. Sometimes they are perfectly fine, other times they are confiscated. She actually purchases el-cheapo needles before every trip, just so that she can toss them at security if there is a problem (not really a solution for a Warhammer army lol).

19-11-2009, 04:17
as i just checked cause i had the same dilemma remember carry on has to be 12X16X24

19-11-2009, 05:01
Ya, I read the long list of rules for TSA in America. There is nothing about metal in general. However, you are allowed to bring on scissors, as long as they are less than 4" in length. If this is allowed, I can't see why metal minis (all of which are under 4" in length) wouldn't be allowed.

The reason that I really want to bring these guys in the metal toolbox is that my entire army can fit in the 14 x 9 x 22 size toolbox allowed by the airline. Then I can but my personal effects and books in by "personal" backpack, and avoid the $20 surcharge for checked bags. I'll also avoid waiting at the baggage claim, and the possibility of them losing my stuff.

I am a little nervous about an anal security guy thinking up elaborate ways in which I could turn my army into a deadly weapon.

19-11-2009, 16:23
My advice would be to contact the airline in advance and get any advice by email, that way if they do pull you up on it at least you can show them the mail and that you did previously ask.
It may work, it may not, nbut if it doesn't and you wind up missing your flight because of some overzealous security guard it would likely make claiming ticket fares back easier.
This is based on what I would do, but I imagine the laws around this sort of thing in the UK to be much different to those Stateside.

19-11-2009, 17:31
As a VERY frequent flier, I travel all over the U.S. for work, I can tell you that they wouldn't have any issues with the models themselves as long as you don't have of your tools, pin vice-hobbyknive-files, but they will NOT allow the metal toolbox. I have always used a citadel carrying case with foam inserts in my checked baggae and have never had any problems with breakage.

23-11-2009, 05:54
Well, just got back from the tourney. Didn't have any problems with the metal toolbox either way. On both flights they asked what was in the box (in a curious, not suspicious way), when I told them, they gave me a quizzical look and said, "Cool."

TSA only gave me a standard reply to check the website for the list of items you cannot carry on when I emailed them, and that the TSA officer has the ultimate say. However, there is nothing even remotely close to a metal toolbox or metal miniatures on that list, and 3 out of 3 guards so far didn't even seem slightly suspicious.

You do need to make sure that your toolbox is the appropriate carry on size. Mine was just inside the limits and fit fine in the overhead compartments, but I was nervous about the flights being full, and not finding room. Toolboxes don't squeeze very well.

All in all, mission accomplished. No problems with TSA or the Airlines (US Air and United). And more importantly, my army is all in one piece, and not lost.