Air Travel With Scuba Gear
In February 2012 Carrie and I traveled from Vancouver to Cuba with a stopover in Montreal to do some scuba diving. I always travel with all my gear including a video housing and video lights with big battery packs.
In my carry-on luggage I have items I can’t do without if they get lost like my dive computer, video camera and housing. The rest of my gear gets checked. If the airline loses my checked luggage I can still rent this gear at my destination.
The problem with carrying on this type of gear is that it gets extra attention from airport security. Having airport security swab my camera bag and housing for explosives is something to expect. For some items it is good to bring a product flyer or manual to explain what it is and what it does.
After airport security figures out what it is they often are just curious. In Montreal they even asked if I work for National Geographics. They called everybody over to take a look at what I was carrying and had so many questions just to satisfy their own curiosity. I had a good time talking about my passions and they got a lesson in what these things are.
The moral of the story is, people are curious and cautious when you bring equipment with you that they don’t understand. When traveler with this type equipment you need to be understanding and patient. Always make sure you are early and have all paper work ready when going through airport security. Listen to what they ask and follow instructions. Give them time and always be courteous. Remember they are keeping you safe.
Make sure you can demonstrate how things work and are able to turn it on. Bring product manuals for the really weird stuff. Just go with the flow and take it in strides. Enjoy it as part of your travel adventure and think of all the great stories you can tell afterwards.