DAC veterans will remember the year 1995 when View Logic gave away baseball bats at DAC. Imagine the scandal when an airline captain refused to let one of our salespeople take his bat on the plane! Today the scandal is luggage charges and those of us traveling to DAC this year are going to be prime targets of this not-so-gentle nickel and dime maneuver. Unless you fit everything you need in a carry-on bag.
A properly packed carry-on can fit all that I needed for a life time! No reversing inner garment jokes please. If I can carry enough clothes to make it to the weekend, there is time for laundry, so I dare say I can live from a carry-on forever. I have made a 4 week world tour from a carry on and had room to bring back a few gifts, but no baseball bats.
Let’s start with our friends at the airlines and their faithful assistant the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). When you carry on you have to know the rules. Most airlines define a carry on as a bag with total dimensions (height + width + depth) of 45 to 51 inches. Each airline has slightly different rules, so it pays to check. A good list of acceptable dimensions, by airline, can be found at http://www.luggageonline.com/about_airlines.cfm. A computer bag or a briefcase is allowed on as long as it can go under the seat in front of you. TSA sets specific rules for what you CANNOT carry on at http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/prohibited/permitted-prohibited-items.shtm. Also check the 3-1-1 rule on the size of liquids that can be carried on http://www.tsa.gov/311/index.shtm. Even if you think you know, check the rules for two reasons: 1. The rules do change and 2. You can always get a laugh thinking that someone needs to be reminded that dynamite is forbidden in your carry-on. Tourists!