Tech Blog

Travelling with tech is a wee harder now

by Blogger on ‎12-30-2009 09:39 PM - last edited on ‎04-30-2012 08:52 AM by Retired Moderator

One of the big news items of the past week has been the attempted terrorist bombing of a Detroit-bound plane and the subsequent security restrictions on air travel. Right now, we're in a transition from a period where many travelers brought only carry-on baggage to now when, for the time being, we can't carry anything on. Yes, I know that these rules are only for U.S.-bound passengers for the moment, but I have a sneaking suspicion that even in Canada we're going to see some new rules come into effect shortly. So, if you need technology for work, play, vacation, etc. what's the best thing to do to travel with tech?
I'm not for a moment going to claim expertise or inside information, I'm going on gut feel (and lots of years of traveling) here. Essentially, you're going to have to plan to ship your tech ahead of you or carry your tech with you, sans bag, onto the plane. The watch word is going to be travel light and travel tight. Check your tech with your bags you wonder? Yeah, even with locks, which would have to be TSA approved therefore able to be opened post check-in, I'm sorry to say that low-paid baggage handlers are going to be pretty tempted to pilfer tech from bags for profit. The airlines? Yeah they claim no responsibility. The airports? Not much better.
Cameras are going to be not too bad, assuming you're not bringing much gear with you, because you'll have a strap. Laptops are an other matter. I'd like to think that a simple sleeve with a strap might be allowed, but I kinda doubt it. So be ready to hold fast to that laptop, book, and iPod (I'm recommending sport coats with lots of pockets for the upcoming travel season).
How long will this no carry-on silliness last? Hopefully not long. The consumer complaints and cabin chaos are going to get pretty crazy I think. Can you imagine a 747 full of people trying to gather all their stuff in their hands on and off a plane?
Traveling with tech, for the time being, don't bring it, ship it ahead, or bring only the minimum you need. Since you will have to check some of your tech essentials, look into insurance for things "lost" or damaged in transit.
Now we can only hope that technology will help us allow us to carry bags again and still feel safe in the air.

by Retired Blogger on ‎12-31-2009 09:19 AM

Funny, a comment I heard from a relative on this issue was that they were looking forward to the reduced in-cabin baggage -- having been bumped, hit, and had laptops dropped on her by under-strength passengers unable weild the weight into the overhead bins.


It may also prove a resurgance notebooks (pen and paper type), physical books and magazines, for in-cabin entertainment.


Regardless, once again, the terrorists win as we all jump into yet another layer of personal freedom lockdown.

by Exalted Expert / Community Ambassador on ‎01-01-2010 12:24 AM

Regrettably I'll be choosing cruises or land trips in the near future.  With reduced carry-on weights and sizes, it's harder to bring my electronic creature comforts.  Somehow blackberry convergence(GPS, camera) isn't going to be good enough for me.


I thought about mailing my stuff ahead, but it can sometimes be like half a plane ticket to mail a suitecase full of batteries, power charger. clothing and souveniors.


While we know about carry-on restrictions and security going in and out of the states.... but what about flying within the states?  Is there the same restrictions?  As most Canadian live within a short distance to a US border town, would busing across the border and then flying have easier flying restrictions?

by Exalted Expert / Community Ambassador on ‎01-01-2010 08:30 AM

Interesting..... on the Amercian airlines websites, it states the carry-on limitation is a Canadian precaution.  So it appears by busing to an USA airport is a way to possibly get around the limitation.,6867,53307,00.html#canada

Customers traveling from any Canadian destination to the United States should be advised that effective December 28, 2009, Transport Canada (a department of the Canadian government) put into place a ban on any carry-on baggage that customers would have access to during flight. 

 The Canadian Air Transportation Security Authority (CATSA) prohibits passengers from taking any carry-on bags through the screening checkpoint. Passengers will still be allowed one personal item such as purse or briefcase. For more information on what personal items may be accepted, please refer to the CATSA website.


However on the Air Canada Website, it appears to be a joint country decision.

MONTREAL December 30, 2009 -- Air Canada and Jazz remind customers that new security measures imposed by Canadian and U.S. government authorities on flights from Canada to the U.S. remain in effect until further notice. As a result of these rules there are strict limits in effect for carry-on articles allowed in the cabin and longer security screening times at airports.

Air Canada advises passengers that the new regulations do not permit carry-on bags on flights to the United States, with only limited personal items allowed in the cabin, and recommends customers consult Transport Canada guidelines at  or for details on permissible carry-on items such as a small purse, laptop computer or infant care items.

Air Canada recommends passengers travelling to the U.S. from Canada check the status of their flight before going to the airport and arrive early for their flight in order to allow adequate time for additional personal searches. Under new rules enacted by Transport Canada and the U.S. Transportation Security Administration, passengers and their carry-on allowance will be strictly limited and subject to full searches at airport screening points.


Same thing on the WestJet website

Due to the new, increased security measures imposed by the Canadian and U.S. transportation authorities, flights to and from the United States continue to be affected by significant delays and in some cases, cancellations.

by Blogger on ‎01-01-2010 03:45 PM
Thanks guys. I think Go-to-meeting might have a banner year if 2010 becomes the year of traveling sans tech.
by Exalted Expert / Community Ambassador on ‎01-02-2010 09:45 AM

For those that didn't hear.... here's another issue for tech heavy travellers....


There is also a video on the upper right.

by Blogger on ‎01-02-2010 11:43 AM
@XL exactly. I think airlines and airports are going to have to step it up a notch on the security of our bags.
by Exalted Expert / Community Ambassador on ‎01-07-2010 09:38 PM
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