Laws regarding taking guns through an airport and onto a plane have changed over the years. In the modern era, many law-abiding citizens run afoul of these confusing and ineffectual restrictions.
It wasn’t that long ago that traveling with firearms wasn’t considered a big deal.
United and Firearms Shipping
Roll back to 1963 and you can find that United Airlines went out of its way to attract travelers with firearms.
You see, Pelican-type cases didn’t exist back then. Frequently hunters and other sportsmen transported long guns in soft scabbards. As you might imagine, these soft-sided containers didn’t offer enough protection from airport handling and shipping woes.
So, United developed a special shipping box for gun owners. The heavy-duty corrugated cardboard boxes were exceptionally sturdy and came with packing materials to prevent the gun from bouncing around on the inside of the box.
United went one step further. Instead of tagging you with overweight fees on your baggage – which a rifle or shotgun could do at that time – the company would register the long gun as Air Freight and send it into the same cargo hold but at a cheaper rate.
Here’s the original article on the subject:
The Flying Holster
Taking a gun along on a flight can be a downright nuisance.
Most scabbards and cases are not suitable for airplane and airport handling, and a good many hunters have complained bitterly about the way their guns were handled en route to hunting areas.
United Air Lines has done something about this.
Free of charge, you can get a special, heavy-duty gun container made of corrugated cardboard and with enough heavy paper padding to insure safe arrival of your gun.
If your duffel and gun weigh more than the allowed maximum, United makes it possible to ship your gun through their “Personal Reserved Air Freight” plan that gives you a lower rate than a straight over-weight payment.