Previous 1 2 Next 16 Replies Latest reply: Jul 27, 2006 4:52 AM by SteveDurnin
macblack Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Has anyone had experience with travelling with an iMac on an airplane? Will they let me bring it as cabin baggage or do I need to check it in baggage?

Will need to be taking it with me soon, as it is summer break in our part of the world.

Mac OS X (10.4.6), iMac Intel 17"
  • Nazario Ayala Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)
    Pleae for the love of your mac take it with you in the cabin. It counts as one carry on item. And those xray machines dont hurt it. You can doubel check with the NSA people before you get on.
  • d-mo Level 3 Level 3 (740 points)

    Yes I have travelled with my iMac on a plane. Of course you have to check it in as cargo---not cabin baggage. No airline will let you hand carry somehting that big. And you will have problems with airport security, for sure.

    First I tried to hand carry mine as cabin baggage with the iLugger Bag ( see this link: to see if they would let me in---they did not, citing security and that it was way above the allowable dimensions of what qualifies as hand-carry luggage, and instructed me to check it in cargo baggage. I of course thought better about this because, while the iLugger is a convenient way to carry the machine around, I wouldn'ty trust it unaccompanied in the cargo bay (I don't feel confident the pads are that thick for this particular purpose).

    Suffice to say, I promply rescheduled my flight and went home to pack the machine in the original box it came with---with the stryrofoam padding and everything. I felt that if Apple uses this packaging to ship their machines, then it should hold up in an airline cargo bay for the short (4 hours) flight.

    I checked that in, arrived at my destination, and the iMac held up very well---not a nick or scratch in it.

    Hope this helps you out...
  • macblack Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks, Nazario, but have you had actual experience in the airline actually letting you carry it in the plane?

    I want to know before making my plans.

    Edit here: Sorry, I did not notice that a new post just came up which I think answers the question about first hand experience.

    Message was edited by: macblack
  • macblack Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you, D, interesting thing, that iLugger. Are you telling me that even when it comes packed in that the airline still refused you cabin access?
  • d-mo Level 3 Level 3 (740 points)
    No they did not.

    But if you want to be sure, you can go to your airline office first, bring along the iLugger (not necessarily with the machine inside it yet) and inquire as to the possibility of hand-carryinng a bag this size. It would help if you tell them the weight of the machine (7 kg for the 17") it will contain Alert them, too that it will contain a computer and inquire if this may be a security issue.

    If they say no, then the original packaging is your best option when you do check it in as cargo baggage. This box is, after all, the container that Aplle ships this very computer in, so it is really designed to hold up in this kind of situation.
  • macblack Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Good suggestion, except I don't have the iLugger yet.
  • Dah•veed Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
    I beg to differ about carrying the iLugger on an airliner. I have flown 3 times since I got my iMac in JAN. The company that makes the iLugger designed it to be within the required dimensions for carry on baggage. It fits perfectly in the overhead bin, just as the manufacturer states. There is no security problem. People fly with computers as carry on baggage every day.
  • d-mo Level 3 Level 3 (740 points)

    If you don't have an iLugger yet, what were you planning to put the machine in when you carried it on? You can bring that container to the airline office and see if they will accept that.

    If you are planning to get the iLugger, before you travel, you can just bring the dimensions with you (it's on the website, I think) and have them see it.

    As they have apparently let David travel with his (What airline, David?), then this is a good option you should inquire about.

    While they do let people travel with computers all the time, as I informed the airline, that time I tried, thay explained that travelling with an actual desktop is a not exactly commomplace. Anyway, I never got to security as I was turned down already just on the basis of size.
  • Dah•veed Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
    Aviacsa, American and Mexicana

    The size is "WHL" and is usually 45", and on some larger airlines 55". My iLugger is 5.752018, or 43.75. The weight is 40 lbs up to 50. The 17" iMac weighs just under 16.
  • macblack Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks a lot guys.

    I was not really thinking about the iLugger when I posted this question and i don't think it will be an option for me as I have to travel soon and won't have the time (or the money, actually) to order one.Thanks for the recommendation anyway. I will probably try to show the airline the suitcase I was originally planning to carry it with (A bit bigger than the iLugger especially when I insert foam paddings) and see if they let me in with that. If not, I guess that leaves the original Apple Box. It should be sturdy enough.
  • d-mo Level 3 Level 3 (740 points)
    "It should be sturdy enough."

    Yes, it should, provided you have the entire packaging intact, stryrofoam and all---as it shipped originally. Certainly worked fine for me.
  • acsims Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I recently flew with a 20" iMac using the iLugger and it worked perfectly. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I got it for $99 from the Mac Store. Why don't you try to find someone that would loan you one? I would, but I'm in Amsterdam, probably a little way for you to travel to just get a bag.
  • bruceup Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Getting it on the plane with an iLugger (which I have) is one thing, can an iMac actually be powered from an airplane seat power port? I'm told iMacs draw less than 100 watts at maximum load, and I've seen APC DC/AC power inverters that go to 150 watts. Has anybody had any experience with this? I've got some international travel coming up and would love to take my main computer with me.

    iMac 17" 1.9ghz iSight   Mac OS X (10.4.6)  
  • Dah•veed Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
    Taking it as carry-on luggage is one thing, but I think even the 17" is a bit large to drag out and set up on an in-flight tray table, even in 1st class.
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