When planning a trip, whether it’s for business or pleasure, a necessary evil to consider is what you bring when dealing with airport security. It seems as though the “approved” and “not approved” lists are constantly changing so that it would be understandable if you sit there in exasperation thinking “I don’t know what’s allow and what’s not!”. It’s a common frustration, and we understand that you may be feeling especially concerned when it comes to your pride and joy: your drone.
Traveling with drones can be tricky if you don’t know what to expect. Here at Drones of Prey, we’ve had to travel in the past to work with clients, so we’re here to share some helpful advice to lead you in the right direction so that travel doesn’t have to be evil at all and your drone will be safe.
First of all, currently, drones are allowed through security when you are looking at travelling within the US. In terms of international flights, the rules are hazy. It’s always best to check what the drone laws are in terms of the country that you’re travelling to in order to make sure that customs officers will not seize it when you go through.
Remember that just because you are allowed to travel with a drone, doesn’t mean that every single airline allows them on board. Make sure you are aware of the airline policy before booking your flight for this reason.
Bag or no bag?
If you’re wondering whether you need to take it out of its protective bag, you aren’t alone. The truth is, it does depend on the TSA screener as an individual. If you are not sure as to whether or not you are going to have to remove the drone from the bag, then just ask the TSA screener when first getting into line, or as soon as possible. They’ll be able to tell you one way or the other, and often they’ll appreciate the heads-up as much as you will.
Even if you are told not to remove it from the bag, it’s always a good idea to be prepared to do so, even if it’s just mental preparation. A surprise is never fun when it comes to security checkpoints, after all.
A note on batteries
There are restrictions on the amount of batteries that you are allowed to take on a flight with you, as well as a restriction on the wattage. When you are getting ready to travel with your drone, it could be helpful to check your wattage and the number of batteries that you will need to make sure that you are under this maximum.
Travelling with drones is certainly nothing to shy way from, but being prepared when you get into the security checkpoint line can certainly help ease your mind and take the unpleasantness from the experience as much as possible. Everyone else will appreciate it, as will you!
Now, we can’t help you with TSA, but we get it. However, if you are in need of a drone pilot for your next project, contact Drones of Prey and we can look at your project needs and provide a free quote.