Musical Instruments

Packing instructions:

  • When a stringed instrument is transported by air, it may be exposed to dramatic changes in temperature and pressure, which can cause the instrument’s headstocks to crack or snap off. To prevent possible damage, it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure that the strings are loosened so that the tension is reduced.
    Air Canada is not liable for damage caused by failure to properly prepare a musical instrument for travel.
  • When transported as checked baggage, musical items must be properly packaged in a rigid and/or hard shell container specifically designed for shipping such items.

Musical instruments as carry-on baggage:

  • We will try to accommodate smaller musical instruments (e.g. violins) as part of your carry-on baggage allowance provided they do not exceed the maximum allowable size and weight permitted for carry-on baggage. Instruments that exceed carry-on baggage size and weight limits must be transported as checked baggage.
  • Exceptions may be made for irregular sizes items at the discretion of Customer Sales and Service Agents based on aircraft type and flight loads.  Items must always fit under the seat in front or in the overhead bins.
  • Due to passenger loads, aircraft limitations and/or storage space available, we cannot guarantee that a musical instrument can be accommodated on board. Please be prepared to transport your musical instrument as checked baggage.

Musical instruments as checked baggage:

  • If checked in separately, a musical instrument counts as one piece of baggage towards the maximum number of checked bags allowed by your fare type.
  • If your baggage count (musical instrument + number of other bags to be checked) exceeds the maximum number of items allowed by your fare type, additional checked baggage charges will apply.
  • For oversized instruments measuring more than 115in/292cm (e.g. guitars, tubas, double basses), please contact your Air Canada Cargo local sales office for handling.
    Exception: Air Canada Cargo cannot handle shipments from or via the US as passengers are considered as unknown shippers for cargo purposes. Please contact another shipping company for this service.

In some cases, a seat may also be purchased for these instruments. Contact Air Canada Reservations for more information.

Codeshare flights/flights with other airlines:

Passengers who purchase travel on a codeshare flight or a flight with another airline may be subject to the baggage policy and other rules of the airline operating the first flight in their itinerary.

For the specific terms and conditions of any Air Canada codeshare partner or other airline sold on, visit the operating carrier's website directly.