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Advice on Travelling to South Africa with handguns

This is a discussion on Advice on Travelling to South Africa with handguns within the Before & After the Hunt forums, part of the HUNT AFRICA category; I am planning a South African plains game, handgun hunt in 2014. Looking for specific knowledge or concerns over flying ...

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    Bill A is offline New Member
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    Default Advice on Travelling to South Africa with handguns

    I am planning a South African plains game, handgun hunt in 2014. Looking for specific knowledge or concerns over flying from PA thru Dulles International to Johannesburg - East London. Planning to go thru United SA airlines but I have not bought my ticket yet. Any advice would be appreciated.

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    PHOENIX PHIL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill A View Post
    I am planning a South African plains game, handgun hunt in 2014. Looking for specific knowledge or concerns over flying from PA thru Dulles International to Johannesburg - East London. Planning to go thru United SA airlines but I have not bought my ticket yet. Any advice would be appreciated.
    While you'll here bad stories about all airlines, United has to be the one for me that I think I never anything good about. So I would avoid it and drive to Dulles and park your car there.

    I don't think there's any problem taking the handgun provided it's one that is "intended for hunting" versus your Colt 1911. I'd recommend using the Henry at riflepermits.com to get a pre-approved permit for when you land in Jo'burg.
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    Which ever airline you use make sure the guns are checked all the way through to RSA. So that Star Alliance partnership should help you out on that point.

    I think this will be the first time that I would personally fully endorse Pre-approved gun permits for you.
    Just to make sure.

    Please let us know how it goes.
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    I took handguns on both of my trips to RSA (T/C Encore, Ruger Super Redhawk). There was no drama at all. Our flights were different each time as we used airline miles for the first trip where we went DFW-Madrid-Joburg on AA and Iberia. The second time was Delta DFW-ATL-JNB. The TSA people were great both times.

    I wholeheartedly agree with the previous posts regarding the use of a service that will help you get the permits cleared ahead of time, regardless of the type of gun, as it makes it real easy to get through the South Africa Police office. I've seen it mentioned that the handguns have to have scopes on them but my Ruger never did though I did have one in the gun case, just in case.

    Depending on who checks your guns coming back w/ SAP, you may get subtle hints that they deserve a tip, such as "Do you have anything else for us?" I just played like I didn't hear them. Besides, it's supposed to be illegal for them to ask for tips so you probably won't hear them put it in those words.

    The only slow part was coming back into country getting through customs in ATL. They weren't the speediest folks in the world so don't make your connections too tight.

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