First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

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howdy
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First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#1

Post by howdy » Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:15 pm

I was going to Phoenix from Houston for a little vacation. I checked my handgun at the Hobby Southwest ticket counter and the process went very smoothly. I had a soft side suitcase and a metal locking gun box. The ammo was in the magazines and placed in a foam container. The slide was back on the pistol. She said thank you and I was off to catch my flight. The process took 5 minutes.

Flash forward to my departure out of Phoenix. I declared the handgun at the ticket counter and the agent said I had to go get in another line that was very long. This was the line used for changing destinations, cancelled flights, etc. There were only 2 agents to handle the entire line. After an hour in line, I made it to the front. The agent filled out the form and said for me to wait there. Another agent came and got my bag and told me to follow him. We then went to another line and and retrieved another bag with passenger in tow. We were taken to a back room to have the TSA check our bag. She then opened my suitcase and DUMPED the entire contents on the table. She told me to come inside and open the metal box. She inspected the box and the foam container securing the magazines. After she was satisfied, she asked me to step back outside and she stuffed my belongings back in the suitcase. I was glad that I was going home and not departing because all my clothes were now very wrinkled. All in all this process took 1 1/2 hours. I arrived at my flight about 30 minutes before departure. (lucky I arrived 2 hours prior)
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ELB
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#2

Post by ELB » Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:19 pm

howdy wrote:...The process took 5 minutes.

.... All in all this process took 1 1/2 hours. I arrived at my flight about 30 minutes before departure. (lucky I arrived 2 hours prior)
TSA will tell you that they use the same procedures at every airport, but...no. I have flown with my handgun a lot, and every airport has been different.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#3

Post by anygunanywhere » Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:21 pm

howdy wrote:I was going to Phoenix from Houston for a little vacation. I checked my handgun at the Hobby Southwest ticket counter and the process went very smoothly. I had a soft side suitcase and a metal locking gun box. The ammo was in the magazines and placed in a foam container. The slide was back on the pistol. She said thank you and I was off to catch my flight. The process took 5 minutes.

Flash forward to my departure out of Phoenix. I declared the handgun at the ticket counter and the agent said I had to go get in another line that was very long. This was the line used for changing destinations, cancelled flights, etc. There were only 2 agents to handle the entire line. After an hour in line, I made it to the front. The agent filled out the form and said for me to wait there. Another agent came and got my bag and told me to follow him. We then went to another line and and retrieved another bag with passenger in tow. We were taken to a back room to have the TSA check our bag. She then opened my suitcase and DUMPED the entire contents on the table. She told me to come inside and open the metal box. She inspected the box and the foam container securing the magazines. After she was satisfied, she asked me to step back outside and she stuffed my belongings back in the suitcase. I was glad that I was going home and not departing because all my clothes were now very wrinkled. All in all this process took 1 1/2 hours. I arrived at my flight about 30 minutes before departure. (lucky I arrived 2 hours prior)
I used to fly and bring handguns and never experienced this.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#4

Post by Pawpaw » Tue Feb 20, 2018 6:41 pm

howdy wrote:I was going to Phoenix from Houston for a little vacation. I checked my handgun at the Hobby Southwest ticket counter and the process went very smoothly. I had a soft side suitcase and a metal locking gun box. The ammo was in the magazines and placed in a foam container. The slide was back on the pistol. She said thank you and I was off to catch my flight. The process took 5 minutes.

Flash forward to my departure out of Phoenix. I declared the handgun at the ticket counter and the agent said I had to go get in another line that was very long. This was the line used for changing destinations, cancelled flights, etc. There were only 2 agents to handle the entire line. After an hour in line, I made it to the front. The agent filled out the form and said for me to wait there. Another agent came and got my bag and told me to follow him. We then went to another line and and retrieved another bag with passenger in tow. We were taken to a back room to have the TSA check our bag. She then opened my suitcase and DUMPED the entire contents on the table. She told me to come inside and open the metal box. She inspected the box and the foam container securing the magazines. After she was satisfied, she asked me to step back outside and she stuffed my belongings back in the suitcase. I was glad that I was going home and not departing because all my clothes were now very wrinkled. All in all this process took 1 1/2 hours. I arrived at my flight about 30 minutes before departure. (lucky I arrived 2 hours prior)
If it happens again, thank them for airing out your dirty drawers. :evil2:
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#5

Post by RoyGBiv » Wed Feb 21, 2018 6:55 am

I would file a complaint with TSA if I was ever treated like that.
Not even Dulles is that mean.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#6

Post by Richbirdhunter » Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:07 am

Another government agency abusing its power? That’s shocking!!
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#7

Post by TreyHouston » Wed Feb 21, 2018 6:42 pm

RoyGBiv wrote:I would file a complaint with TSA if I was ever treated like that.
Not even Dulles is that mean.
Agreed! My friend is a TSA Manager in houston. A formal complaint is NOT something to laugh about. It does not go away and is investigated thoroughly! They will even check the cameras. IF you feel like they treated you unfairly, then file a complaint.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#8

Post by LimaCharlie3 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 8:01 pm

True, TSA is different at every airport, and even different between who the shift manager is. 1.5 hours seems entirely inappropriate and a complaint about the process may open some eyes that policy is not being followed correctly. A hand search of the entire bag when checking a firearm is not the procedure in the airports I normally fly out of. The only reason I see for that would be if the normal high-volume CTX machines were down but then EVERYBODY would be having their bags hand searched; no special line for that. This concerns me because I have phoenix trips on the schedule and my friendly, quiet demeanor goes out the window when confronted with incompetency.


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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#9

Post by twomillenium » Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:27 pm

The biggest problem with filing a complaint with TSA is that they have to find someone smart enough to read AND understand what was written.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#10

Post by Syntyr » Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:53 pm

twomillenium wrote:The biggest problem with filing a complaint with TSA is that they have to find someone smart enough to read AND understand what was written.
True Dat! :iagree: "rlol"
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#11

Post by theHunter » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:12 pm

I fly 3 to 4 times a year for the last 25 years, almost always with Southwest to Florida, Nevada, Louisiana and inside the state of Texas. So I don't know about Phoenix, but I do know that each airport handles things a little different. In most cases I tell the counter person I have a firearm to declare, they fill out a form have me put address on it then sign that it is unloaded, tape it to the locked case then have me wait near the luggage scanner in case they need me to unlock the case for a closer look (which has never happened). I usually watch it go through the scanner then go up to board my plane.
I have never experienced anything like what you did.


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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#12

Post by gamboolman » Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:46 pm

Howdy howdy,

Please do file a formal complaint to TSA. TSA needs to investigate and train and/or discipline the person(s) in Phoenix.

I have traveled with checked pistols, ammo and spare magazines a good bit to different states and never had a problem or been treated the way you were.

On a different TSA complaint front:
I will say that traveling international alot for the job - my wife and I have had afew experiences with TSA that were not good. But we have to travel alot and I guess we're bound to get some duds from time to time.

Once I retire - it is my fervent hope and desire that my wife and I never use or get another stamp in our passports again. :txflag:
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howdy
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#13

Post by howdy » Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:01 am

I am the OP. The TSA agent in Phoenix did not search my belonging directly. She dumped the stuff out of the suitcase and got the locked case that way. I would have merely gotton the case out for her if she would have asked. The bag did not get scanned there. It was taken away by the same Southwest agent somewhere else. She did the "gunpowder test on the case and I guess it failed because that was when she had me open it up.
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#14

Post by ELB » Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:29 am

Dumping your stuff out on the counter just to get to the gun box and then just shoving everything back inside is deliberately disrespectful and unnecessary. I've been through the "we need to take your suitcase in another room and open it drill" before, and the agent was able to find the gun box without dumping everything out. He just took out a couple folded shirts and calmly laid them on the counter. When he kind of smushed one of them up putting it back, I made him straighten it out. :)

I hope you have time and energy to pursue a complaint.
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howdy
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Re: First Time to Travel with a Checked Handgun

#15

Post by howdy » Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:45 am

I have filed a complaint with both the TSA and Southwest. I hope I don't get the Houston agent in trouble. Maybe she was required to do the same thing.
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