Restrictions with Carry On Luggage

I know that there are certain restrictions dealing with Carry On Luggage, but there is one thing that I don’t intend to leave without.

My Tuba.

Some might ask if it is a smallish type of Tuba, perhaps a foldable one, which is a common thing in a small Country like Denmark?

No! This is a Full Size Tuba, which will help me pass the many hours on the plane, and regaling the other travelers, while I get myself ready for my Epic Journey.

I’ve ordered a seat with extra leg room allowing the Tuba, when not in use, to be placed under the seat in front of me. I’ve been looking high and low for any restrictions concerning Tubas, but haven’t found anything specific as yet.

Here are the guidelines from Delta Airlines:

Approved Personal Items

  • 1 purse, briefcase, camera bag or diaper bag
  • or 1 laptop computer (computers cannot be checked)
  • or 1 item of a similar or smaller size to those listed above

Additional Approved Items

The following items do not count as personal items (they’re freebies):

  • A jacket or umbrella
  • Food or drink purchased after clearing the security checkpoint
  • Duty-free merchandise
  • Special items like strollers, child restraint seats or assistive devices such as wheelchairs or crutches

It seemed OK until I read on to this sentence:

Carry-on Size Restrictions 

  • Baggage may not exceed 45 linear inches (or 114 cm) in combined length, width and height, including any handles and wheels, with the exception of Small Musical Instruments that fit in the overhead compartment space or under-seat space available at the time of boarding
  • Baggage must fit easily in the Carry-on Baggage Check (approximately 22″ x 14″ x 9″ or 56 x 35 x  23 cm), which is located near the check-in counters
  • courtesy of

Small Musical Instruments. What exactly is small? I live in Denmark which is a small Country, and in a Large City, which is still Small compared to other cities in the world.

Tubas are small in relation to other big things, like Elephants, both the Danish variety and the other more known types. It might go under Special Items, or Assistive Devices, but rest assured, I’ll be contacting the airlines before I load the Tuba onto my moped for the journey to the Airport!

I might just argue that a piano wouldn’t be allowed, unless of course I was on the upper deck of a Boeing 747 with a….What? They don’t have 747’s anymore? I was on one of the first ones when I traveled from Los Angeles to Hawaii in 1974. The upper deck was only for First Class Travelers!

I might just say that my Tuba is allowed for entertaining on the Upper Deck, if they have them, that is (?), and during breaks, it needs to be together with me in the Cheap Seats!

If all else fails, then I might just take extreme measures to insure having my Tuba with me:


Granted, this is only a photo of a trumpet, but let us not lose our heads, until the last possible minute.


(source: Smashing a saxophone and a trumpet with an asphalt roller)




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