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outrageous02909 07-17-2002 08:11 PM

traveling with weapons
What is best way to travel by plane with aikido weapons.

aikidoc 07-17-2002 08:32 PM

Re: traveling with weapons

steven cabrera (outrageous02909) wrote:
What is best way to travel by plane with aikido weapons.

The last time I traveled, I purchased two of the large tubes for mailing rolled up documents and taped them together. I then clearly marked them and checked in with a security person. Iput on the outside in bold permanent marker: wooden martial arts weapons and then taped them up so if necessary I could pull the cap off. I carried extra tape (box packing).

John Riggs

rachmass 07-17-2002 08:33 PM

used to be with gun cases (for katana or iaito), or ski bags for numerous bokken and jo. Dont know if that has changed or not...

lt-rentaroo 07-17-2002 08:34 PM

Put them in your weapons case and take them as "carry on", and never refer to them as weapons; they're pieces of exercise equipment. This should work as long as you're not travelling with Iaito. That's what I do, but then I'm in the military and I just show the inspectors my ID and walk on through. Yet another perk :D

Another option is to purchase a hard sided case for snow skis. You could pack your weapons case inside of it and then travel with them as "checked baggage".

Leslie Parks 07-17-2002 08:35 PM

Travelling With Weapons
Apart from what I'm sure many people will think, ie. not worth even trying...

In December I flew from Chicago O'Hare to LAX. My husband and I arrived early and checked our baggage, including our weapons. They had to go through special screening and were categorized as "odd size luggage". If they ask what they are, "wooden martial arts training sticks" works well, weapons sounds rather...dangerous. Just be careful at the other end. Ours got stuck on the conveyer belt at baggage claim, having been put on at an odd angle. Fortunately, it was the special "odd size luggage" claim, so it was us and one other guy.

Good luck.

aikidoc 07-17-2002 08:46 PM

I checked mine. Carry on might get you in hot water since they could be used as clubs.

Aiki Teacher 07-17-2002 09:42 PM

Ihave a bujin bag. I bought a three inch diameter piece of PVC pipe, put it in my weapons case, placed the weapons in it then zipped it up.

I also checked my weapons underneath. The PVC pipe will protect the weapons very well. PLus it is cheep!

erikmenzel 07-18-2002 02:37 AM


Louis A. Sharpe, Jr. (lt-rentaroo) wrote:
Put them in your weapons case and take them as "carry on", and never refer to them as weapons; they're pieces of exercise equipment. This should work as long as you're not travelling with Iaito.

Nope, this is not true. Trying to do this might get you into trouble! (I know from experience.)

At our club we always check whether someone is going by car. If so then that person is designated wapenstransporter.

For those cases where I have to fly alone I check on beforehand whether the weapons are needed. If not I dont take them.

Bruce Baker 07-18-2002 08:53 AM

new thinking for new ways
I just finished traveling across the USA, NJ to Alaska and back, and there is a lot of I don't know's or you can't do that but never an agreement of concensus from the inspecting agents in either the USA or Canada.

It would seem that we are going to have to find more secure means of transporting our training sticks. Much like musical instruments, or delicate pieces of wood are encased in a more durable hardcase, we might have to either continue to take our chances with carryon luggage, or change our approach to having equipment at hand and let the airlines stow it with the other luggage.

I am glad to see the innovations of using cardboard or pvc reinforcements for your Aiki-ken or Aiki-jo, a newer term coined for our modern use of training tools by John Stevens, author and teacher. (At least the use of Aiki-ken/ Aiki-jo replacing the term weapons, as it does not apply in our modern world.)

I would guess the next step is to have many of our Aikido groups contact the Airlines and formulate a set of standards for packaging, carrying, or stowing the wooden training sticks for transport?

How about we all call and annoy different Airlines and then come back with our results?

Maybe if we let the wheel squeek loud enough, our questions will find a definitive answer?

lt-rentaroo 07-18-2002 08:59 PM


Nope, this is not true. Trying to do this might get you into trouble! (I know from experience.)
Erik - I've transported my training weapons as carry-on several times with no issues, even after 11 September. As I said in my post, I'm in the military, perhaps this is the reason I've not had any trouble. We're not subject to as many of the stringent inspections as everyone else.

Tony Peters 07-19-2002 12:11 AM

I fly about once a month to someplace in the world (sometimes Japan sometimes other places) I almost alway take my boken, jo and my Iaito. I use a pair of 4" PVC tubes held together with Pipe clamps. I always tell them up front what's in the case and as of yet I haven't had a problem...I was in Guam for 9/11 and have flown though many many international airport with security way beyond that of US airports. Most Xray your stuff as it comes in and they are always more freaked about my Tool box that they are about my sword.

BTW Louis you are vetted so to speak so being in the military, you are indeed immune to many of the security events that others have to deal with. One of the may unseen pleasures of serving uncle sam I guess.

Also never carry fingernail clippers much less a pocket knife at Narita airport...Dont ask my why just take my word for it it's a very bad thing

ianb 07-19-2002 07:14 AM

I'm flying tomorrow, from London to Japan. With my tickets there is a handy little "Airport travel and security tips" card.

Amongst other things it says:

DO NOT pack the following items in your hand luggage:

Toy/Replica guns (metal or plastic)


Household cutlery

Kinves with blades of any length

Razor blades




Hypodermic needles (unless required for medical reasons)

Knitting needles


Sporting bats

Billiard/snooker or pool cues

I've guessing a bo, bokken or jo looks pretty much like a snooker cue to your average airport security bloke.

Don't risk it: pad 'em, pack 'em, check 'em in.

suebailey 07-21-2002 08:02 AM


i agree with ian check them in it would be wise to buy the acctual carry case for the jo, bokken and so on as they r available in martial arts shops.

falling this just use a ski case they wrk just as well.

also advise the security in advance and they'll put a tag on it and track were its taken and if its bee tampered with.

cheers sue

Jessica 07-25-2002 07:06 PM

About 2 years ago, my fencing teacher would just carry, her weapons (swords) on board a plane. She did this with them just in PVC pipe.

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