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Following Flight Transportation Laws of Firearms

If you own a firearm, you’re probably aware that there are a ton of rules, regulations and laws around pretty much every aspect of them.

Transportation laws are no exception. You need to be careful how you transport your firearms, else you’re liable to all sorts of run-ins with the law.

Here are the basics that you should know:

The Clay Target Shooting Association of South Africa spoke with a variety of South African airline companies about local transportation rules for sports firearms. According to them, SA Express, SA Airlink and SAA all allow for the transporting of sports firearms as sports equipment and allow them to be transported as part of their sporting baggage allowances. For all of these airlines, all that was required was a firearms licence.

Mango, Kalula and Safair do not allow for firearms to be transported on their planes. Ultimately, however this could change at any time. To be certain, you should ask about their policies before you book your ticket.

When it comes to international flights, you need to apply for a South African Temporary Import or Export permit. This can be done at an airport or a police station. Depending on where you are flying to (or from), you should get in contact with other authorities accordingly.

On the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa’s website, they outline SAA’s policies regarding gun transportation. Domestically, firearms must be packed in a separate lockable gun travel case.

Ammunition must be separate from any weapons and have its own bullet luggage case. Both firearms and ammunition must be declared, and owners will then be shown to a specific desk that will deal with the firearms.

If you are transporting a handgun, there is a handling fee and 1-week notice must be given to SAA. However, if in the same case as hunting rifles, this will not be necessary.

When you arrive at your destination, you will need to go to the firearm desk to collect your weapons.

When it comes to international flights, a similar process exists from South Africa’s side, but you should do significant research – as previously mentioned, different countries will have different requirements.

If you follow these instructions, you should have no problems transporting your firearms. That said, you should err on the side of caution, and request whichever airline you are flying with to provide you with exact instructions – just in case.

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