Part 135

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DOT Approves Final Rule on Carriage of Musical Instruments

Jan. 7, 2015

In compliance with the 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) recently approved a final rule on the carriage of musical instruments.

The new rule creates 14 CFR Part 251 – Carriage of Musical Instruments, which covers both checked and carry-on instruments for scheduled as well as on-demand carriers. The DOT worked with the American Federation of Musicians and air carriers to develop a final rule, which is amicable to both parties.

The new regulation encompasses both scheduled and on-demand flights, as well as domestic and international operations. It is applicable to charter operators only to the extent the operator handles checked and carry-on baggage acceptance for the flight. In this situation, if the carriage of a musical instrument is consistent with FAR 135.87 and the operators approved carry-on baggage or checked baggage program and room is available for the instrument at the time the passenger attempts to board, the charter operator must accept the instrument as carry-on or checked baggage as appropriate.

View the complete rule.

For more information, contact NBAA's Operations Service Group at or (202) 783-9250.