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Phantom 4 in Checked Luggage

Discussion in 'Rules and Regulations' started by Abi Reid, Aug 23, 2016.

  1. Abi Reid

    Aug 23, 2016
    Likes Received:
    I am flying from Toronto to Paris (Charles de Gaulle) in just over 24 hours, en route to Edinburgh. I have a Phantom 4, its controller, minimal accessories and two batteries that I have stored in the original grey styrofoam shipping box (once the price of the ThinkTank Helipak goes down I will be all over that!).

    I am flying with Air France for both flights and since I have enough space in my checked luggage, I plan to check as much of the drone and its hardware as possible. With this I have a few questions:

    1. The controller has a lipo battery within, is it allowed to be placed in checked luggage?
    2. Do the drone batteries have to be discharged? To what percentage?
    3. The Air France "Conditions for transporting batteries and lithium batteries" (https://www.airfrance.fr/common/image/pdf/en/Bagages_batterie_lithium_en.pdf) document says that lipo batteries under 100Wh can be placed in checked luggage so long as they are contained in a device. I'm assuming the drone would qualify as a "device," therefore can anyone attest to this being true?
    4. Regardless of if I have one drone battery or two in my carry on, do they have to be placed in plastic bags and terminals covered with electrical tape as many have mentioned?
    Thank you in advance for any help and if there are any other precautions I am missing, please do let me know!
  2. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jan 8, 2014
    Likes Received:
    You found the AIr France info regarding batteries and it's the same as most other airlines.
    No airline asks you to discharge batteries or use Lipo bags and no airport security check is interested in these either.
    The controller fits the category of portable electronic device with batteries contained in the device.
    Although the Phantom with a battery fitted would also fit that, I'd just carry the battery since it's so easy to remove just to avoid possible problems with airport check-in people.
    I've not heard of anyone wanting to see extra bags or tape - the Phantom batteries are adequately protected against accidental shorts.
  3. SamNetwork

    Apr 9, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Are you sure you can't stow it as carry-on under the seat in front of you?
    You won't have to worry about the LiPos and you won't have to worry about it getting lost in transit. Plus it's free.
  4. Abi Reid

    Aug 23, 2016
    Likes Received:
    After some thought, and due to a sudden and unprecedented lack of luggage space, I've opted to take the drone and all accessories (except for propellers) as carry-on. Luckily, I am permitted to carry two carry-ons because without that I may have been in a serious pickle between carrying the phantom 4 in its original case and my Sony A7Rii, three lenses, batteries galore, portable chargers, external hard drives, apple charging bricks and a bag of plantain chips all stuffed into my trusty camera knapsack.

    Thank you both for your help nonetheless and if I am able and willing to check in my phantom 4 in the future, I will thankfully be much wiser!

    Thanks again!
    SamNetwork likes this.
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