Subscribers who saw our previous reports on the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) allowing hunters to pack their ammunition in their gun cases with their firearms when traveling by air should know that some individual airlines do not allow you to do that. Subscriber Karl E. Markin discovered this recently during a trip to West Africa. In a note he sent us, Markin writes, "I recently returned from a hunting trip to Benin and Burkina Faso. The only airline going to this area is Air France. I traveled to Paris on United Airlines with my ammunition in my rifle case, as per the suggestion of our government. My baggage was transferred to Air France, but when it was x-rayed, they had a major hissy-fit and required me to go to their baggage area and remove my ammunition from the rifle case. On the way home, I kept my ammunition in my suitcase, and both airlines were uncomplaining...."
Lest anyone think this is an isolated instance, we should note that we are hearing other problems of this kind with Air France. For all we know, other airlines may be balking at this practice, too. Our advice is simply to ignore the TSA suggestion about ammo and pack it in one of your other bags. Yes, you could probably call all the airlines you plan to fly on a given hunting trip and ask each one if they have a policy against placing ammunition in a gun case. But how reliable would that feedback from individuals agents be? Importantly, TSA does not say you have to put your ammo in your gun case; it says you may. Our advice is, don't.