The airline industry can be pretty tough on luggage, and it can be expensive to travel with a ton of gear, but sometimes it’s a necessity. Whether you are heading to a trade show, a photo shoot or just travel frequently with a plethora of equipment, we’ve compiled a quick list of traveling tips for you and your Bel-Air plastic carry case.
1. Choose The Right Airline
If you are traveling with just one plastic carry case, it might not matter what airline you choose. However, if you have two or three or many cases, it might be wise to consider looking at airlines that allow travelers to check at least one case or bag at no charge.
For instance, Southwest Airlines allows travelers two checked pieces of baggage as long as the total size of each piece of baggage does not exceed 62 inches and the item weighs 50 pounds or less. Other airlines charge $25 to $50 per item, so if you are only traveling with two cases that fit the size and weight restrictions; you can save some money by selecting an airline that doesn’t charge for your first two checked bags.
2. Research Airline Cargo Rates
Of course, many of our customers don’t travel with just a single plastic case. They bring along tons of equipment in heavy-duty shipping cases, expo cases and other large cargo. For these types of trips, it can be wise to research the cargo rates from several different airlines. Before you call, be able to provide information such as the size of each plastic carry case and the weight when filled as well as the dimensions of each case. A little research could save you hundreds of dollars, especially if the airline also offers some good rates for your passengers.
3. Look At Special Rates
Some airlines offer what is known as a media rate. This is a flat rate offered to photographers, members of the media and filmmakers so if you fit in one of those categories, this could help you save a bit of money and provide you with the convenience of keeping you and your equipment together on the same flight.
4. Consider Alternatives To Air
If you can ship your equipment ahead of your trip, this is usually much less expensive that flying with your equipment. Ground transportation shipping will almost always be cheaper than flying with your cargo. Research the rates from UPS, FedEx, Greyhound and other freight carriers to find the best deal.
If you are traveling internationally, look into shipping via ocean rather than sending your cargo as air freight as this also can be less expensive. Of course, you will have to have your cases ready far in advance of your trip, but if this is an option, it can save hundreds of dollars. Some shipping companies also offer volume discounts if you ship a bunch of items at one time, so consider selecting a company that offers this type of discount.
5. Purchase Insurance
While a Bel-Air plastic carry case definitely can ensure that your equipment will arrive at their destination safe and sound, it’s still wise to purchase insurance for your freight. After all, what if a piece is lost in transit or stolen or the container ship hits an iceberg and sinks to the bottom of the sea? If you have expensive equipment, looking into cargo or freight insurance is a smart idea.
6. Choose The Right Plastic Case
We have many different types of plastic cases. Our light-duty carry cases and medium-duty carrying cases are fine in an overhead bin (provided they meet carry-on restrictions), but this type of plastic carry case is not meant to be transported as luggage or freight. Our heavy-duty carrying cases, our shipping cases and our expo cases are all built to withstand the rigors of transport and these are the cases you’ll want to select for delicate equipment or anything that will be transported frequently by land, air or sea transportation.
If you aren’t quite sure which plastic carry case to select, just give us a call at 866-235-2472. One of our helpful case experts will help narrow down which type of case will best suit your needs and then we will get started building your custom plastic cases.