I Do Destination! How to Wrangle the Airline Hurdle

Photo Credit: Clint Shuttlesworth

With destination weddings within the Continental U.S. and abroad becoming more popular with couples.  There is a common challenge most brides face; “How do I get my dress and personal decor there”?

Many bridal boutiques have started recommending that a Bride consider shipping her dress via Fed Ex to her destination. If this option is chosen, I would certainly address it to your contact person at your destination location and allow (3) weeks for the process. If you are going to a very remote location, allow (4) weeks.
If the thought of packing your dress in a box and shipping it off makes you hyper ventilate, you can definitely can carry your wedding dress through a security checkpoint. Ideally, the dress can lay flat in its garment bag or other packaging and fit through the X-ray machine. If it can’t, our officers can screen the dress manually, but this will require opening the garment bag. Rest assured that TSA officers will use gloves for the alternate screening to avoid damaging the dress.
You should also consider the plane size and whether you are in business or first class. While some aircraft have closets in first class that can hold the dress, others may not, which could cause challenges in storing the dress above the seat. Airlines will also count the dress as a carry-on item, so be sure to learn about your airline’s carry-on policies to avoid having to check any items at the gate. If never hurts to contact the airline to confirm their individual policies as they may change without notice. 
If you are transporting personal decor for the celebration, consider the following tip: 
1. If you’re taking a special cake knife to cut the cake, please ship it or put it in your checked bag. 
2. Wired bouquets are allowed through the checkpoint, along with rice, birdseed, sand and candy coated almonds. 
3. If you’re taking gifts for your bridal party, it’s best to wrap them when you get to your destination in case they require additional screening. 
4. Pack all of your jewelry in your carry-on bag – don’t put it in checked bags
5. If you are taking a special set of toasting flutes, wrap each glass in bubble wrap and ensure they are well protected
6. If you have planned a lot of DIY decor items and plan to transport them via a suitcase vs. shipping them, make sure to weight the bag to avoid extra weight costs.
If you have special questions regarding the items you want to take on a plane you can call or email TSA’s Contact Center at 1-866-289-9673 or at TSA-ContactCenter@dhs.gov. 


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