December 20, 2014, 09:47:11 PM

Author Topic: Airtravel experts  (Read 7576 times)

7enderbender

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 636
    • View Profile
Airtravel experts
« on: December 31, 2011, 04:42:57 PM »
Hello everyone,

Sorry to stick this here under EOS Bodies, but I couldn't find a better place. There have been some recent discussions here around airtravel and carry-on regulations.

I'll have to go from the North East US to Europe in the summer (and back of course) and I'm trying to plan ahead a bit on what airline to pick, which connection flights/airports to pick in Europe and what bag/case/backpack to get that will work as a carry-on with a bunch of camera gear that I'd like to bring (1 or 2 bodies, 4-5 small and medium lenses, 2-3 flashes, accessories, etc, small laptop).

I'm thinking about the Pelican 1514 since it seems the best price of various options, I could use it for other stuff later and if I'm forced to check it I would feel slightly (!) better about it.

In any case, what have been recent experiences with various carriers lately? Seems, they are getting ever more picky about weight issues. I saw some where the limit was 6kg for carry. That's less than the empty Pelican case...

American carriers still have mostly 40lb in place but that limits my choices, especially given the code share arrangements that may nullify this again. I've taken AA in the past quite often but I'd like to avoid going through Heathrow. Destination could be Frankfurt, Amsterdam or anywhere in the larger area.

Thanks and Happy New Year to you all.
5DII - 50L - 135L - 200 2.8L - 24-105 - 580EXII - 430EXII - FD 500/8 - AE1-p - bag full of FD lenses

canon rumors FORUM

Airtravel experts
« on: December 31, 2011, 04:42:57 PM »

wickidwombat

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *********
  • Posts: 4575
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2011, 05:34:12 PM »
heathrow is a nightmare, and avoid british airways like the  the plague they have the worst customer service and the rudest staff as well as the most nazi like rules about carry on unfortunately they are hard to avoid in that part of the world, lufthansa are not too bad singapore airlines are great as is cathay
APS-H Fanboy

katwil

  • Guest
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2011, 06:14:07 PM »
I’ve never encountered an issue with the weight of my carry-ons, just with checked baggage.  Generally carry-on restrictions are dimension-based.  I’ve pasted the information from American Airlines website (aa.com) below.

Travel to/through/from Europe

Number of Bags Allowed    Size and Weight Per Bag Allowed

One personal item: No charge   45 in/115 cm (carry-on)
   
One bag carry-on: No charge   62 in/158 cm (checked)

One bag checked: No charge   50 lbs./23 kgs (checked)

The measurements above are the total of the length, width, and height of each bag.  I would think that most other US carriers match up pretty close to these standards.

I would agree with an earlier post about Heathrow and BA; that’s a bad combination.  My general experience with transatlantic travel from Europe has been that smaller airports are better as long as the flight schedules are acceptable.

Kernuak

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1108
    • View Profile
    • Avalon Light Photoart
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2011, 07:16:10 PM »
A number of carriers in Europe have quite stringent weight limits for carry on baggage. One exception is Easyjet, their limit is what you can easily lift into the overhead storage :P. They're dimensions for carry on is also among the largest. Norwegian is another one with more generous allowances, with similar dimensions to Easyjet and 10kg. The downside, is that you pay extra for each piece of hold baggage, but at least then you are only paying for what you need and I think the basic for each is 20kg (some are only 15kg). As both are budget airlines, don't expect too much in the way of customer service and you'll be fine and don't expect to get meals included. You will of course also have to use other carriers to get to Europe, as I don't think they fly transatlantic (although Easyjet may and Norwegian have links to other airlines).
Canon 5D MkIII, 7D, 300mm L IS f/2.8 and a few other L's

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ************
  • Posts: 15227
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2011, 07:28:20 PM »
In my travels, I've never had a carryon weighed, only checked bags.  I'd imagine if you grunt and strain to carry it, someone might notice and check, but as long as you're able to carry it comfortably, you should be fine.

I have both Pelican and Storm cases (both Pelican, technically, since Pelican bought out Storm).  I prefer Storm over Pelican - the latches are just as strong, but much easier to open. The Pelican Storm im2500 w/ dividers is the equivalent of the Pelican 1514.
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

Kernuak

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1108
    • View Profile
    • Avalon Light Photoart
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2011, 07:32:28 PM »
In my travels, I've never had a carryon weighed, only checked bags.

I haven't either, it's all about appearance, unless you're unlucky. I have been asked to show my carry on once, but I made sure that I had some shreddies for breakfast and held it so that they couldn't see the one dimension that was slightly over by 1cm.
Canon 5D MkIII, 7D, 300mm L IS f/2.8 and a few other L's

7enderbender

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 636
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2011, 07:34:41 PM »
In my travels, I've never had a carryon weighed, only checked bags.  I'd imagine if you grunt and strain to carry it, someone might notice and check, but as long as you're able to carry it comfortably, you should be fine.

I have both Pelican and Storm cases (both Pelican, technically, since Pelican bought out Storm).  I prefer Storm over Pelican - the latches are just as strong, but much easier to open. The Pelican Storm im2500 w/ dividers is the equivalent of the Pelican 1514.

Well, that's encouraging. I think I'll go with one of those cases then and hope for the best. Prices on airfare for July is still outrageous at the moment so I'll still have time to shop around and also find the right airline - hopefully.

So the latches are the biggest difference between the two now-Pelican types. Anything else?

Thanks again for your - as always - remarkable and detailed knowledge. All the best for the upcoming year.

 
5DII - 50L - 135L - 200 2.8L - 24-105 - 580EXII - 430EXII - FD 500/8 - AE1-p - bag full of FD lenses

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2011, 07:34:41 PM »

7enderbender

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 636
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2011, 07:45:41 PM »
heathrow is a nightmare, and avoid british airways like the  the plague they have the worst customer service and the rudest staff as well as the most nazi like rules about carry on unfortunately they are hard to avoid in that part of the world, lufthansa are not too bad singapore airlines are great as is cathay

Yeah, unfortunately I know. Heathrow is just awful. I still kept taking that route because for a number of years they were just the cheapest on my routes out of Boston and to continental Europe. But still, the stuff that happens to luggage there and the delays and the busing people around and the security-kabuki dance (resulting in missing connection flights)...

Lufthansa, generally speaking, I like but they now also have some 8kg policy in place and ze Germans may just be disciplined enough to actually enforce it now. Same with Iberia. Had good experiences otherwise including connecting at Madrid airport.

Singapore Airlines may be something to check out. Never took them but heard good things. I think they go into Frankfurt from here which would work for me.
5DII - 50L - 135L - 200 2.8L - 24-105 - 580EXII - 430EXII - FD 500/8 - AE1-p - bag full of FD lenses

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ************
  • Posts: 15227
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2011, 08:50:05 PM »
So the latches are the biggest difference between the two now-Pelican types. Anything else?

Thanks again for your - as always - remarkable and detailed knowledge. All the best for the upcoming year.

The latches are the biggest difference. The Storm divider padding is a little less compressible.  For the two carryons, the dimensions are very slightly different - the Peli is a little narrower and a little longer, the Storm is a little shorter an a little wider.  Probably not enough to make any difference if storing gear with the dividers. But, it makes a difference for me when I pack my loaded Lowepro Flipside 400 AW in the hard case (dividers removed) - the pack is a snug fit for width, just fits in the im2500 but likely would not in the 1510.

Happy New Year!  All the best...

--John
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

scottkinfw

  • 1D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 780
    • View Profile
    • kasden.smug.com
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2011, 09:46:00 PM »
Last March went to Africa: Dallas-Nashville-Amsterdam-Kilimanjaro via KLM Dutch.

KLM was awesome- spoiled us the whole time, and we were in coach.  No problems with baggage.

I have a couple of suggestions to consider:

Look at Thinktank Airport International V2.0 V.2.0 Rolling Camera Bag.  This is guaranteed to fit overhead or under seat all airlines.  It is a roller and converts to backpack.  This allows  you to carry it on your back while lugging other bags by hand-very handy.  Very well made, good features.

Another trick you may find handy is to wear a safari vest.  You may feel silly in it, but you can stow lenses, and lots of stuff in the pockets, and it isn't considered carry on since you wear it.

One final suggestion- don't check your gear- never let it leave  your side.
sek Cameras: 5D III, 5D II, EOS M  Lenses:  24-70 2.8 II IS, 24-105 f4L, 70-200 f4L IS, 70-200 f2.8L IS II, EF 300 f4L IS, EF 400 5.6L, 300 2.8 IS II, Samyang 14 mm 2.8 Flashes: 580 EX II600EX-RT X 2, ST-E3-RT
Plus lots of stuff that just didn't work for me

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ************
  • Posts: 15227
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2011, 10:05:43 PM »
One final suggestion- don't check your gear- never let it leave  your side.

What if you get stuck boarding a flight late (based on boarding zone/row, or a tight connection), and the overheads are all full?  That probably happens on >50% of flights I take these days. It didn't used to be this bad, but with the implementation of and subsequent big increases in checked bag fees, everyone tries to carry it all with them to avoid the fees.

The gear mentioned by the OP doesn't seem like it would all fit in a bag small enough to stow under a seat (the Thinktank bag you mention is carryon size, but at 21" long, seems like it wouldn't fit under a seat).  I agree in principle about keeping your gear with you - but sometimes that's not an option, and arguing the point with flight crew these days is likely to land you in jail.  For that reason, I'd not recommend using a soft-sided case - higher chance of damage, and also theft (zippers are easily opened), if forced to check the bag.

Also, make sure your gear is all insured before your trip (it should be insured anyway)!
« Last Edit: December 31, 2011, 10:13:11 PM by neuroanatomist »
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

dr croubie

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1400
  • Too many photos, too little time.
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #11 on: December 31, 2011, 10:23:20 PM »
Another trick you may find handy is to wear a safari vest.  You may feel silly in it, but you can stow lenses, and lots of stuff in the pockets, and it isn't considered carry on since you wear it.

I did that too, not a safari vest just a nice big polar fleece, in June, 28 degrees C, flying from Schiphol back to australia via Singapore (31C and 99% humidity). Had about 3-4 lenses and a laptop charger in my jacket, a P&S and wallet and about 1kg of various coins from around the world in my pants pockets, laptop and camera and books in my backpack weighing about 13kg, plus 22kg of checked baggage including a pair of skis. Singapore Airlines officially only give you 20kg still, but I made a comment like, "ah, 1kg under" when I weighed it at the check-in desk, as most airlines these days give you 23kg. Was just lucky that noone weighed my backpack, being an 85kg 6' bloke I wasn't straining too much so they probably never suspected.

It used to be the case that any ticket going through/via the USA you got 30 or 40kg checked baggage, my dad used to fly around the world a lot for work (he was a ship's Captain), the company always sent him on a flight through the US so he could get a lot more baggage, cheaper than a quicker/more direct flight paying excess baggage allowances. So if you're coming from the USA you should get more baggage allowance, that's probably airline-dependent these days though.

+1 on the EasyJet once you get over there, book long enough in advance and pay like $10 a seat, the unlimited-weight-as-long-as-you-can-carry-it-yourself has proven more than useful for me in the past.

Also, I've never flown through Frankfurt, though I've done Schiphol, Heathrow, Gatwick, Stanstead, Luton all often enough that I wouldn't bother. You're probably better off going to Frankfurt for any continent-based travel, then hop on a german ICE fast-train, book up to 90 days in advance and you can generally get anywhere between NL, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Poland, Austria, Switzerland for as little as €30, much preferable to flying and take all you can carry (also, you get as much leg-room as business class on a plane).

To go to the UK you can also get to Schiphol, take the Thalys or hourly-Intercity to Brussels, and Eurostar to St Pancras (from my place in The Hague that was quicker to my sister in London (Hammersmith) than bothering with planes). Schiphol as an airport isn't bad, but because of the density of the country I'd only recommend it if your first stop is NL, the german ICEs go through there but they're limited to 150-200km/h until they get to germany, only then they can go 350km/h, so Frankfurt is better for German/Austrian/Swiss travel.
Too much gear, too little space.
Gear Photos

Caps18

  • Canon 70D
  • ****
  • Posts: 286
    • View Profile
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2012, 03:03:59 AM »
I got the Pelican 1514 case (Case Cruzer one) for my birthday and with my 17" Macbook Pro, 5Dm2, 16-35mm, 85mm, flash, 25mm extension tube, and 300 f/4 +1.4x it all weighs 32 lbs.

I still am having problems finding a case for my tripod that I could carry on.  They don't seem to have a 23"x14"x5.75" case (a larger version of my 1490 case).  The Pelican 1700 would be great, but I can't carry it on.

Easy to roll around, I wouldn't want to have to carry it from one side of Heathrow to the other.

I took the Tube and Eurostar to Paris, and I would recommend the trains to get around Europe over the airlines.  Except from Barcelona to London.  That flight was faster, easier, and cheaper.
5D mark 2, 16-35mm f/2.8, 17mm TS-E f/4, 85mm f/1.8, 300mm f/4 + 1.4x, 580 EX Flash

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2012, 03:03:59 AM »

awinphoto

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • ********
  • Posts: 2013
    • View Profile
    • AW Photography
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #13 on: January 01, 2012, 03:16:23 AM »
I have the pelican 1514 and love it. Was able to run around San Fran international trying to connect after my original flight was delayed (ended up missing it cause my connecting push back early). It works as well as any rolling luggage however the only complaint is the pull out handle feels flimy, it still works well. I didn't have any problems on airlines with it however I had a flight attendant or two ask me once boarded if I wanted to check the case or put it in their supply closet. I politely said no thanks and they left it at that.
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, Canon 85 1.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

willrobb

  • Guest
Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #14 on: January 01, 2012, 05:12:25 AM »
I've always found flying with KLM via Amsterdam to be a very hassle free option when going between Asia and Europe. Anytime I find a cheaper ticket via London I always regret having to deal with the staff in Heathrow, has to be one of the worst airports to fly through.

Carry on wise I always use Lowpro bags that fit within carry on luggage size restrictions, the AW 400 for example. I can get two bodies, a couple of speedlites, my MacBook and about 4 lenses in, it's never been weighed and has t caused any issues yet...touch wood.

Actually I'm moving back to the UK in March and am a bit worried about taking all our gear, plus light stands, tripods, backgrounds etc. Maybe need to use DHL....think I'll start a thread about that soon.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Airtravel experts
« Reply #14 on: January 01, 2012, 05:12:25 AM »