Taking Cameras And Film On Planes With Ease

Just about everything having to do with flying on any commercial airline has changed in recent years. There's no exception, whether you're taking your film camera on a once in a lifetime vacation or you're a photojournalist scheduled to cover an assignment. You can still take your camera and film on the airplane, but you need to take certain precautions to protect your film.

You can fly with many kinds of cameras. Both film and digital, disposable cameras, video cameras, and cell phone cameras are all allowed on flights. The film, on the other hand poses the problem. If you pack undeveloped film in your checked luggage, the high intensity screening equipment will destroy your film. Only carry undeveloped film in your carry-on camera bag.

When packing for your trip, have all your undeveloped film in a large plastic bag, if possible. Request ahead of time to have your film hand-inspected, and not run through the security scanner. Also, store your camera in your carry-on bag with all film removed, so it's not destroyed when run through the scanner. Currently, your digital camera memory cards, memory sticks and other digital storage devices appear to be safe to be shipped in your checked luggage or run through the carry-on luggage scanner. Being prepared before arriving at the airport helps speed up the process when you get to the security check area.

Exposed film or processed film won't be damaged by the baggage scanning machines. As long as you pack them so they won't get crushed or damaged, they should come through a flight with no problems. Just place the exposed film back in the canisters they came in and pack it safely in your suitcase or camera bag, if you're taking along a large bag that is sturdy enough to check.

Checked baggage can take a lot of abuse and has been known to not reach it's destination. Many photographers elect to pack their camera equipment in their camera bags and use them as a carry-on to ensure their safety. To make room for extra film, if needed, wear your camera on the strap around your neck. If you do have to pack your equipment in your checked baggage, always take at least take some equipment with you in your carry-on. Then if your luggage is lost or stolen, you'll still be able to get those irreplaceable vacation photographs or that shot that will put you on the cover of a major magazine.

Source by Suzanne Vandegrift

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