Detachable Scope and Airline Travel??

Fatback

AH elite
Joined
Aug 28, 2022
Messages
1,098
Reaction score
2,586
Media
30
Hunting reports
Africa
2
USA/Canada
1
I have my first rifle with a detachable scope. I was doing a little practice this afternoon and the thought occurred to me, would it be permitted to take the scope off the rifle and take it in a carry on bag while traveling to Africa? I know I take my binos and range finder in my back pack on the plane when I travel but I thought I heard or read somewhere that this isn’t allowed with rifle scopes for some reason. Am I imagining this or is this a real thing? I’ll be flying Delta in a few weeks to Joburg and am curious about this. Thanks
 
I carried two scopes and two pairs of binoculars in my backpack. No issues. If you have optics with lithium batteries, you don’t need to remove them if they are in your carry on.
 
No problem in your carry on.

In 2 trips I never had a problem with my scope on my rifle with a quality rifle case. On my last trip I watched my case get dropped at least 3 times and the Leopold scope still held its zero.
 
Except I called in to the Delta help desk and got the answer of "No, they have to be checked". Then I pointed out their webpage saying they could be carried in carry on bags. Then the youngster checked with a supervisor and came back with "OK".

Then we go to the gate and this Matilda the Hun bag x-ray operator hadn't bullied her quotient of innocent travelers for the day decided it was firearm related, and said I would have to check it. When I produced the printed page from their website, she called over the "captain". The "captain" had apparently also not bullied anyone yet and also started to say I could not carry on the scope. Then this other (very attractive, by the way) screener had been listening and pulled up the webpage on her phone showing the captain that I was correct, and I was finally allowed to carry the scope in rings in my backpack with me.

I recommend that you repeat all of my precautions and hope for someone that has a brain that day.
 
would it be permitted to take the scope off the rifle and take it in a carry on bag while traveling to Africa?
for me, this was not a problem in my experience.
In my carry bag, I had rifle scope, range finder, binocular.
 
Except I called in to the Delta help desk and got the answer of "No, they have to be checked". Then I pointed out their webpage saying they could be carried in carry on bags. Then the youngster checked with a supervisor and came back with "OK".

Then we go to the gate and this Matilda the Hun bag x-ray operator hadn't bullied her quotient of innocent travelers for the day decided it was firearm related, and said I would have to check it. When I produced the printed page from their website, she called over the "captain". The "captain" had apparently also not bullied anyone yet and also started to say I could not carry on the scope. Then this other (very attractive, by the way) screener had been listening and pulled up the webpage on her phone showing the captain that I was correct, and I was finally allowed to carry the scope in rings in my backpack with me.

I recommend that you repeat all of my precautions and hope for someone that has a brain that day.
How would a gate agent know what you had in your bag after it passed trough security?
 
I carried 4 scopes and my binos in my carry on... no issues between US and TZ.
 
Perfectly legal to carry scopes in your carry-on. Just no ITAR related items.

As your optics are often quite an investment themselves, having them in my carry-on, I see as an additional diversification of risk. Even if they lose my guns, I’ll still have my optics left.
 
If witnessed a German hunter being given a hard time by a airport security inspector in Canada. He had a beautiful expensive Zeiss scope in his carry on bag. Security guy told him to check it or he was not allowed on the plane. This was some years ago, hope the rules have changed or this was an isolated incident but don’t know that.
 
Definitely carry it with you on the plane. However, don’t make the mistake I did. I took the scope off, put it in a soft case in my backpack, carried on Delta, landed and put it on my rifle. I had zeroed it at 100 yards but the range only went out to 50 yards at my hunting lodge. It was high but didn’t think much of it since I had zeroed at 100 yards. That led to me losing a Kudu, a Gemsbok, and nearly cost me a wounded Sable. All happened within one day. Fortunately, I didn’t come close to the Kudu. It sailed a mile over his head. Same with the Gemsbok. I still don’t know where I hit the sable but we found three drops of blood. He was eventually recovered but that is NOT the way to start a hunt. Even if you are sure your scope wasn’t bumped on the flight, act like you are zeroing it for the first time when you get in country. My rifle was 6” high at 100 yards. I re-zeroed and everything was like clockwork after that. I’m still kicking myself for missing the Kudu.
 
I've not had good luck with detachable scope rings except Blaser. I fly with a Pelican 2 gun case with rifles packed in soft cases and have never had a concern or damage of any kind. I have two Z8 scopes which cost about $4K each but I don't worry about it.
I see damage on most every trip with other brands of gun cases. This year it was another client who had a metal 2 gun case which leaked and was full of water on the way home.
Use Pelican cases for everything and don't worry.
Regards,
Philip
 
I recently carried 2 scopes in my carry on for my R8. Got to camp, put them on their respective barrels and both held their zero perfectly.
 
What do you keep the scopes in while in your backpack/carry-on?
 
Have carried on a number of times with no issue, but have heard of issues with illuminated or bdc scopes being dissallowed in some european countries due to their military characteristics.
 
I recently carried 2 scopes in my carry on for my R8. Got to camp, put them on their respective barrels and both held their zero perfectly.
It's amazing how repeatable the R8 scope mount system is. Mine have all been removed numerous times, and always return to zero.
 
I’ve carried scopes in my carry on several times. It’s allowed on every airline I’ve flown. Warne and Talley rings have always returned to zero quite nicely.
 
I don't take scopes off rifles when traveling. If I don't get my rifle case, having the scope isn't going to do me any good, I'm still going to end up using a camp rifle. I don't carry backup scopes either, on the very unlikely chance one take a dump, camp rifle it is.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
55,124
Messages
1,171,025
Members
95,804
Latest member
JennaWooll
 

 

 

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

A.A. wrote on Msprenger!'s profile.
Are you still looking for a 375 H&H?
NRA Life, ASSRA Life, GGCA Life
Sable @ the lodge this morning

Buffalo encounter this morning!

here with available dates for 2024/25

1-13 September 2024
14-31 October 2024
1-7 November 2024
18-24 November 2024

March 2025 is wide open!
12-17 April 2025
24-28 May 2025
15-21 June 2025
7-12 July 2025
22-28 July 2025
13-31 August 2025
15-30 September 2025

October and November 2025 is wide open!
 
Top