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Traveling with Stage Piano #1611742
02/03/11 10:44 AM
02/03/11 10:44 AM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 9
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Mill2k Offline OP
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Hello all,

I was wondering if i could get some advice on how to travel with a Yamaha P85. As i am going to move to the Netherlands (from Japan) in April i wondered if you guys could give tips on how to pack it for the Flight and also if a case HAS to be ATA in order for them to accept it (would the carriers even know the diffrence??). I concidered sending it through UPS/FedEx or the like but they charge amounts of up to 600-700 euro for it so that is out of the question. I booked my flight with Brittish Airways because of their musical instrument policy.

Quote
Musical instruments
There is no additional allowance for musical instruments, but they can be carried as part of your free checked baggage allowance.
If the instrument is in addition to your free checked baggage allowance, you will need to pay an extra bag charge.
We will accept a musical instrument between 23-45kg and up to the dimensions: 190cm x 75cm x 65cm (75in x 29.5in x 25.5in) only if that piece cannot be broken down.
A double bass will still be accepted even if it exceeds the maximum dimensions.
You must notify us at the time of booking, or at least 24 hours before your flight, if you are travelling with a musical instrument.
American Airlines and Iberia have different allowances for the carriage of small musical instruments. Please follow the links on this page to ‘Information if you're travelling on American Airlines and Iberia’ for more information about their allowances.


Would the Yamaha P85 be sturdy enough to survive some shocks if its packed in a semi-hardcase for piano's? (possible wrapped in bubble platic foil or some layers of cloth).

And i've read quiet a few bad experiences with the Gator series, handles breaking off and such while lifting it etc. Anyone that can share their experiences?

Thanks for your help! smile

(PS: if anyone knows a good case shop in the US with decent shipping rates tips would be welcome).

http://www.swanflight.com/keyboard-...ases/yamaha-p85-keyboard-flightcase.html

Something like that seemed nice but the shipping to Japan is quiet expensive.

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Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1611767
02/03/11 11:14 AM
02/03/11 11:14 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,439
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Online content
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Dave Horne  Online Content
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Vught, The Netherlands
There's a big voltage difference between Japan (110 VAC 50\60 hz) and Europe (230 VAC 50 hz). Does the P85 have universal voltage? (Half of Japan has 50 hz and the other half 60.)

Considering the costs of buying a flight case and\or shipping costs, it might be worth considering selling it in Japan and buying something else over here.

I personally would only ship it in a flight case, an ATA case. You don't have to buy them new, you can go to a music store and buy something second hand or have the store make you a case specifically for your piano.

The P85 has been around for a while and I'd give some thought to all the costs involved before bringing it over.

Where in the Netherlands will you live? (I'm in Noord Brabant.)


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1611770
02/03/11 11:17 AM
02/03/11 11:17 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 483
United Kingdom
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Rimmer Offline
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BA should have an insurance policy to cover the luggage so i'd check that out with them. I'd recommend a hard case, although i've checked in all manner of things over the years and I don't recall anything getting broken.


Regards. Rimmer

Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Dave Horne] #1611791
02/03/11 11:53 AM
02/03/11 11:53 AM
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Posts: 9
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Mill2k Offline OP
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Mill2k  Offline OP
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I have concidered the option of selling and rebuying in the Netherlands. But not only the prices in Netherlands for digital piano's arent encouraging at all, a travelers case seems really usefull to me as i am not sure how long i will stay in Netherland and might end up going back to Asia after a year.

After some looking around for second hand flight cases these seemed to be the ones around:

Gator Keyboard Flight case (88 keys)
http://aucfan.com/aucview/yahoo/r74560755/

And a hardcase for a diffrent model but i will mail the shop about the interior sizes to decide if my piano fits.
http://marks-music.com/SHOP/armor-hckurzweilpc88-u.html

Checking out custom made cases seems interesting too, will look around how much that would cost me in Tokyo. In the end i dont have problems paying around 30000 yen (almost 300 euro) for a new Gator 88slim case (proclaimed as ATA) but ive heard some bad comments so i want to check alternatives as i have some time anyway before i move.

I will call BIA tomorrow to check with them what my options are. As i have to switch planes on Heathrow im not sure if its the best idea to talk my way into taking it onboard.


PS: I will live in Flevoland.

Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1611804
02/03/11 12:06 PM
02/03/11 12:06 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 428
Europe, Poland
kiedysktos. Offline
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Recently I talked to my friend which travels a lot with instruments, he plays with his group concerts around the world. He was on the most demanding airports like British Heathrow. His advice was NOT saying that you have an instrument, just hold it in your hand all the time and go into the plane with it, just like it was some kind of bag; it just must fit into the window where they are x-rayed, but that's not hard. Then just before the moment you're getting on the plane you can ask the stewardess does she have some free space in her place - they have a lot of space in their place. Even if not, you can put your instrument at the end, behind last seats on the floor. It is usual procedure when there is not enough space for your baggage above your head.

He plays vibraphone (wearing in on his shoulder; quite big instrument), but he has the keyboardist in the band and it works; of course it looks a little weird, because keyboardist has big case and he have to hold something really heavy in one hand, but he passes everything. It happened once that they asked my friend to go somewhere and X-rayed his instrument, but it lasted for 15 minutes and he got onto the plane with it without problem.

There was once a case when they had a new manager, they didn't informed him about this... and he said to the airport crew that they have INSTRUMENTS. Than it started... whoooo, they have instruments! Controls, lot of discussions, many problems, extra paying etc.... they even had to talk with airport manager. So they don't say they have instruments, even when it is obvious, for example bass guitarist have case in guitar shape. Just don't say anything and hold it like it was your personal baggage, pretend you don't have anything unusual. And in some places like in Russia if you say you have an INSTRUMENT you probably never get out of the airport, only problems and extra paying smile

I don't have any experience with it, but that's what I've learned from my friend; he is awesome jazz musician.


Roland FP-4
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1611834
02/03/11 12:45 PM
02/03/11 12:45 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,439
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Online content
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Dave Horne  Online Content
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Vught, The Netherlands
And a hardcase for a diffrent model but i will mail the shop about the interior sizes to decide if my piano fits.

I had a case custom made for my P250 (which has the same dimensions as the CP300 - a big piano). My local music store gave me, free, I might add, spacers that a set of speakers came packed with. These are Velcro type, stiffish plastic belts (for lack of a better description) that I now insert into the case to fill the space left by my CP5.

It wouldn't hurt to buy something larger than you need (think second hand as well) and you could always use spacers to make up the difference. The case I had made for my long gone P250 will last me the rest of life. (I could conceivably be buried in it ... to save costs. smile )


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1612032
02/03/11 04:49 PM
02/03/11 04:49 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,838
doremi Offline
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I am 'doremi' because I play scales smile
Had I progressed to playing chords,
I would be 'domisol' shocked
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1612263
02/03/11 09:45 PM
02/03/11 09:45 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 9
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Mill2k Offline OP
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I am looking at the Road Ready RRKB88W now, seems a decent priced strong case.
Although i just called the carrier and they said the limit was 32 kg for musical instruments unlike the 45kg noted on the website.

Quote
If you want to take bags which are larger or heavier than the guide given above, you will need to send them as cargo. The only exceptions are musical instruments and film equipment weighing less than 45kg that cannot be broken down and that we have been notified of in advance.


When i pointed this out they would verify it and call me back later today. So hope it works out. smile




Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: kiedysktos.] #1612513
02/04/11 09:09 AM
02/04/11 09:09 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 380
UK
Aidan Offline
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Originally Posted by kiedysktos.
Recently I talked to my friend which travels a lot with instruments, he plays with his group concerts around the world. He was on the most demanding airports like British Heathrow. His advice was NOT saying that you have an instrument, just hold it in your hand all the time and go into the plane with it


EDIT: Maybe your friend uses British Airways - otherwise, advice below stands smile

Sorry, but this strikes me as very bad advice - it sounds to me like your friend has just been rather lucky so far. But what happens on the 99th time out of 100 when the check-in staff or cabin crew insist you check it? Then, one of the assets of your livelihood is suddenly in the hold and possibly rolling around in a soft or semi-hard case. And how does he get past all those airlines who have a "your hand luggage must fit in here" shell policy?

Most pro keyboard players travel by air with at most maybe a rack unit - the rest is sourced from local backline companies. There are sound reasons for this - it's more convenient, safer and usually cheaper too.

Last edited by Aidan; 02/04/11 09:13 AM. Reason: Slight amendment

Live: Casio PX-5S | Hammond SK1
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Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1612538
02/04/11 10:15 AM
02/04/11 10:15 AM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,942
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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Since this is a more permanent moving situation, I second the recommendation for shipping the keyboard. If you carry it on the plane and it doesn't fit into the bins overhead, they may make you check it at the gate which usually costs more than checking it ahead of time. I would not trust the airlines with my keyboard smile.


private piano/voice teacher FT

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Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1612708
02/04/11 03:55 PM
02/04/11 03:55 PM
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Posts: 149
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Manolios Offline
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I wouldn't recommend travelling with your instrument. The double-bass of my bass player was damaged and the music stand from my Yamaha P-120 was completely destroyed after a short flight in Europe. I recommend shipping!

Manolios


Yamaha C3 | CP4 | Sauter Modell 108
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Manolios] #1612921
02/04/11 11:34 PM
02/04/11 11:34 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 9
M
Mill2k Offline OP
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Mill2k  Offline OP
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How did you pack them? I can't imagine it being that bad. The, for now intended case weights 30kg and I'd assume that offers a lot of protection. Shipping 88 key sized keyboards costs a lot with the standard carriers. Although I haven't checked seamail yet . Even then ill need a decent case though. I have the original package as well. But a piano in a card box doesn't make me feel save at all. crazy

Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1613106
02/05/11 11:28 AM
02/05/11 11:28 AM
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Manolios Offline
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Yeah, it really was that bad. Maybe my mistake was not getting a rigid case for my P120 in first place, I only had a soft bag instead and the music stand was placed in the storage pocket. But there's still no excuse for the badly damaged double-bass, which was packed in an special built solid 600 Euro hard case.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that the airline loaders won't take much care of musical instruments.

Manolios


Yamaha C3 | CP4 | Sauter Modell 108
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Manolios] #1613497
02/05/11 09:27 PM
02/05/11 09:27 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 428
Europe, Poland
kiedysktos. Offline
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kiedysktos.  Offline
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Originally Posted by Aidan
Originally Posted by kiedysktos.
Recently I talked to my friend which travels a lot with instruments, he plays with his group concerts around the world. He was on the most demanding airports like British Heathrow. His advice was NOT saying that you have an instrument, just hold it in your hand all the time and go into the plane with it


EDIT: Maybe your friend uses British Airways - otherwise, advice below stands smile

Sorry, but this strikes me as very bad advice - it sounds to me like your friend has just been rather lucky so far. But what happens on the 99th time out of 100 when the check-in staff or cabin crew insist you check it? Then, one of the assets of your livelihood is suddenly in the hold and possibly rolling around in a soft or semi-hard case. And how does he get past all those airlines who have a "your hand luggage must fit in here" shell policy?

Most pro keyboard players travel by air with at most maybe a rack unit - the rest is sourced from local backline companies. There are sound reasons for this - it's more convenient, safer and usually cheaper too.


I don't have any experience with it, so I just shared my friend's experience. Of course it depends on airlines you travel. But if you often fly to some gigs, and you count every dollar (like those spend on renting instrument from backline company), you sometimes want to take a risk. Most factors are predictable and measurable, so it is up to you what solution you choose. If it is rare travel, or you can easily afford other option, it doesn't make sense to take any risk.

Originally Posted by Manolios
I wouldn't recommend travelling with your instrument. The double-bass of my bass player was damaged and the music stand from my Yamaha P-120 was completely destroyed after a short flight in Europe. I recommend shipping!


Yes, I've also heard about bass guitar broken in semi-hard case... it was a little too long and didn't fit the place, and the machine that pushes all bags is extremely strong.


Roland FP-4
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1613640
02/06/11 01:50 AM
02/06/11 01:50 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
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Redondo Beach, California
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ChrisA Offline
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Originally Posted by Mill2k
Hello all,

I was wondering if i could get some advice on how to travel with a Yamaha P85. As i am going to move to the Netherlands (from Japan) in April i wondered if you guys could give tips on how to pack it for the Flight and also if a case HAS to be ATA in order for them to accept it


Shipping one time is a lot different from a musician who does a gig every week and packs it 50 times a year. For a one time move you can use an over sized cardboard box. Wrap the P85 in bubble wrap so that it is covered at least with 2" thickness on all six sides then but it in a box. Then put that box inside a second box with 2" of packing on all six sides. If you still happen to have the factory box use that as the first box. Then you simply buy insurance and don't care to much if they break it.

You could buy a case but it would cost as much as a P85 is worth. The best cases are custom made of plywood with vinyl covering and aluminum corners and have custom foam inside. Cost maybe $600. Not worth it for a single use.

Shipping via the airline is expensive. There are frieght forwarding companies you could ask them what they'd charge to ship directly to your address.


Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1613714
02/06/11 05:50 AM
02/06/11 05:50 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,439
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Online content
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Dave Horne  Online Content
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At www.marktplaats.nl (a Dutch site - the OP is moving to the Netherlands) there's a P85 for sale for €500. Considering the costs involved and the worth of the piano to begin with, I'd give more thought to selling it in Japan and buying either the same here or something better but also second hand.



website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1613937
02/06/11 03:38 PM
02/06/11 03:38 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
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I always buy a second seat for my instrument. Some airlines make you have to call in and buy the ticket by telephone which costs a few extra bucks but I've never been denied taking it to my seat (usually they have reserved seats in the back) Flown like that many times, but though only on cheap flights. I would never check in the instrument as luggage.

/edit
Agree to OP.

Last edited by FredFabulous; 02/06/11 03:39 PM.

RD-700NX (25 nov 2010)
Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1614000
02/06/11 05:26 PM
02/06/11 05:26 PM
Joined: Dec 2010
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Rocky Mountains
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This is not so much advise as sharing thoughts.
I know that every airline has a shipping department. Usually on the other side of the airport from the people terminal. This is the same place you go if you want your pet to go on an airplane ride. I know from personal experience. They often place the package straight into a large aluminum carrier that is custom designed for the plane. Along with a bunch of other packages. The thing is about five feet tall and five feet wide. Otherwise and regardless of the custom aluminum carrier. There will be less handling of your package. No trying to go through air baggage handlers. No worrying about corrupt front counter people. These guys constantly handle packages with very expensive stuff inside.
I do also know many times package handlers use this. So it in itself was a surprisingly cheaper alternative. But you have to go through the hassle of visiting the shipping department on each end.
Just a thought...


Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon
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Re: Traveling with Stage Piano [Re: Mill2k] #1656552
04/07/11 08:59 PM
04/07/11 08:59 PM
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Mill2k Offline OP
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Since this is all over now let me share my experience.

I managed to buy a Road Ready case for my Stage Piano at a 18000 yen price, new (roughly 165 euros)
It is possible with British Airways to take oversized baggage with you if its a instrument that can not be taken down into smaller parts such as a Piano so i had booked a flight with them. Because of the excess weight i had to pay the excess weight fee of 40 pounds on the airport (wich translated into 5400 yen, bit lower then 40 euro).

I have used and carried that case around through Japan quiet a bit with the piano inside before it got on the plane (think of things like those blind guidance things at stations wich made the case bump up and down all the time, bumping into things and falling from small heights and what not), and also due to circumstances over there it has been in the case ever since early March for safekeeping. Arrived in the Netherlands the Piano is still in 100% condition. Not a single flaw found and is just as before it went into the case. I can vouch that these Road Ready cases although really heavy in weight do give superb protection for your instruments.


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