Travel with a Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by jspinrad, May 21, 2009.

  1. jspinrad macrumors newbie

    May 21, 2009
    I am flying to China from the states and would like to take my Mac Pro tower with me. I would like to carry it on if possible, but I don't know if that works or not. If anyone has traveled with their Mac Pro, please tell me how you did it. Many people have pointed out that shipping is a way to ensure better care than baggage handlers will give, but since I am going to China, I'm pretty sure it would cost a small fortune to ship.

    I have seen a few questions about this around, but haven't heard about successes or failures, just suggestions. Has anyone tried to do this?
  2. mobilehaathi macrumors G3


    Aug 19, 2008
    The Anthropocene
    I honestly think insured shipping is your best bet. I wouldn't trust baggage handlers nor do I think that you'll be able to carry it on.
  3. jnc macrumors 68020


    Jan 7, 2007
    Nunya, Business TX
    I think it's too big to be carry-on, and yes it will take all sorts of knocks and bumps as checked luggage, so.. I'd send it insured.
  4. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    You also want to use the original box for shipping.
  5. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says...definitely too big and too heavy for carry on, and you're probably going to have to pay excess baggage charges if you check it along with whatever else you are bringing.

    Maybe you ought to think about just bringing the hard drive and maybe an external case, then connecting it to use with a computer there, or investing in a notebook of some sort.....oh yeah!
  6. sparkie7 macrumors 68010


    Oct 17, 2008
    its possible to put it the underhold (checked-in baggage). You can ask at check-in for it to go through the fragile/oversized section. They stick fragile stickers on it and "carry it on" -- well thats what they say. it does sometime end up on the conveyor belt when you land. I have done this with expensive camera kit worth 10X more than a Mac Pro
  7. mobilehaathi macrumors G3


    Aug 19, 2008
    The Anthropocene
    If the cost of round trip insured shipping is more than, say, a refurb MacBook. Just buy a MacBook to take with you. That is assuming you don't necessarily need the power of the MP while you're there. You could always set it up as a server back home and connect remotely to it.
  8. Tesselator macrumors 601


    Jan 9, 2008
    I don't think it's too big for carry-on but it might be too heavy. There is a weight limit and they do weight it as you check-in. Some clerks/airlines will let you slide at even twice the weight while others will charge you for the over-weight parcel. Yet others may not allow it on at all. Call and make sure of the limits and to find out how they handle exceptions.

    If you ship it then double-box it and make sure to get the correct insurance! Also i would remove any cards that you have installed before shipping.
  9. mchalebk macrumors 6502a

    Feb 4, 2008
    Regardless of whether or not you can actually carry it on, one of the problems of traveling these days is how quickly the overhead storage compartments fill up. With some (most?) airlines charging even for a single bag, more and more people are getting large carry-on bags and trying to get away without checking any baggage. If the overheads fill up, they'll make you check it at the gate. That might be better than checking it at the counter, but it's still risky.

    I really think you're asking for trouble if you try to carry on a MacPro.
  10. Bartman01 macrumors regular

    Oct 23, 2008
    As a frequent traveler, I would NEVER travel with a MacPro this way. There is a good chance that you will have one of the following issues carrying on:

    • Too big/heavy for the airlines requirements. The allowed sizes can be smaller and weights are lower (and frequently actually checked) for carry-on limits internationally.
    • No space left in overhead bins.
    • Overhead bins too small.

    And the thing would end up in checked baggage where it would be tossed around, dropped, or lost. You would never get any meaningful $$ back for it since they have extremely low insurance caps.

    What are you doing that requires a MacPro over a MacBook Pro? If you absolutely have to have that MacPro then insured shipping is the only way to do it. Otherwise either rent a MacBook Pro or buy one and then sell it when you get home.
  11. yezza macrumors regular

    Mar 12, 2008
    I would bet money that it's to big to carry on as hand luggage, besides the fact that it's too heavy. I believe that the carry on weight limit is somewhere around 7kg.

    I decided to freight my 10 month old Mac Pro and 30" CD separately when I moved from Australia to NZ. Flying it over (insured) cost me $400 AU (~$310 US), and once it arrived in NZ I had to pay an additional $760 NZ (~$470 US) to NZ Customs :mad: The only upside, if you can call it that, is that my Mac Pro and 30" were "de-valued" based on age, so I did not have to pay duty on the full value of it. Still, I was p!$$3D when I had to pay gst TWICE!

    Anyway, I sent them both in their original boxes, and it took only a few days. I would suggest that you have any receipts handy on the other end just in case. I really don't know what to expect of China Customs though..

    Oh and if you look at the length of the flight from Melbourne to Auckland (only ~3.5 hours), compare that to the length of your flight from US to China - this may give you an idea of cost compared to what I paid.
  12. akdj macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    Buy it it's own seat:)

    OR, put it in a big dog pet carrier (after putting some sort of wig on the Mac Pro, under a blanket) and tell them you drugged your dog for the long trip. They should treat it well:rolleyes:

    Never mind, the MacPro is a pretty dangerous looking item to someone who has never seen it....and is specifically looking for dangerous things. The dog thing probably won't work.

    Buy it it's own China> That way, YOU control it the whole way! The perfect, albeit expensive shipping option!

    You are going to be best to ship it. Definitely too big to fit overhead. The decent sized carry on luggage specifically designed for that purpose is as big as they will let you bring inside.

    Good Luck
  13. elvisizer macrumors 6502

    May 29, 2003
    San Jose
    this is how the pros do it:

    I used to work at Ziff Davis Media, and am currently at Lucasfilm, and as part of my duties at both places, i've shipped g5's and mac pros all over the world in these pelican cases and never had a problem. Pelican cases are tough.
  14. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

    Jul 5, 2008
    Thule GL @ the TOW
    ...+2 for a pelican case if you have to ship it with you...
  15. DeepCobalt macrumors regular

    Sep 6, 2007
    Over and around
    You're going to need a Pelican (or similar) if you want to travel with it. It will have to be checked. Forget trying to get it on the plane--you won't even make it past security. They will make you completely disassemble it to go through the x-ray machine (if they will even allow it--most will say it is too large for the sizer).

    You will be sorely disappointed if you try to carry it on. Simply put, you will not be allowed to.
  16. dukebound85 macrumors P6


    Jul 17, 2005
    5045 feet above sea level
  17. Bartman01 macrumors regular

    Oct 23, 2008
    The key word here is 'shipped'. Shipping with a trusted carrier and proper insurance is the ONLY way to do this. Taking it as checked baggage is just asking for trouble - just read all the fine print in the standard and even 'extra' insurance you can buy from the airlines.
  18. itou macrumors regular

    Jan 16, 2008
    i've done it.

    when i bought my mac pro in japan and moved to canada last year, i took my mac pro with me but only as part of my luggage.

    i had shipped my ACD and mac pro together with me on my flight to canada, and it costed me around 20,000 yen (in extra luggage plus overweight) at the time. i shipped in their original boxes and sealed it off twice with tape, stuck "fragile" stickers everywhere (seriously, like 40 of them) and prayed my way to canada.

    it really depends on the country i think. i was fortunate to leave from japan, where i honestly believe is the last country on earth to give a damn about customer service. my flight was also direct so i was lucky. narrowing your flights to direct will narrow your chances of having a broken mac.

    ps: the display is also oversized and will have to be checked too. that's the downside too.
  19. Tesselator macrumors 601


    Jan 9, 2008
    I agree about JAL and the airports in Japan caring about the customer. Even the security is very human. In Japan i feel human, in the US I feel like a cow and in the UK I feel like a worm or something that barely has a right to even exist. :D

    But anyway ¥20K is a lot cheaper than the ¥60K ~ ¥80K you would have had to pay if you shipped via carrier like UPS or etc. Not bad!
  20. itou macrumors regular

    Jan 16, 2008
    spot on.
    but i don't think i'll ever do it again without one of those pelican boxes.

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