Destination Weddings

Carrying on my Wedding Gown

Hello everyone!

I will be traveling to Maui next May for my wedding, and was wondering about carrying my gown on the plane. Anyone have any experience with this?

Thanks!

Re: Carrying on my Wedding Gown

  • I'm in the same boat.  I'm curious what others will do too.  I've heard most airlines let you carry it on and put it in the first class coat closet.  But my cousins wife wasn't allowed.  She called the airline ahead of time and they told her it would not be a problem.  When she boarded she had to put it in the overhead bin.  :-(
  • I had a fairly large a-line satin dress and carried it in a regular dress bag (I bought one from David's Bridal for $10) without a problem. On the first flight down to Atlanta, I was able to hang it in the first class closet. On the second leg, a much smaller plane, we just rolled it up and put it in the overhead. You'll want it steamed when you get there, so if it can fit anywhere, it'll be fine. 
    "There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness." -Friedrich Nietzsche, "On Reading and Writing"
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    On the trip there, I flew Delta and was able to hang it in first class closet. After the wedding, I was on a smaller Southwest plane that didn't have a closet to hang it in. The attendant to me to just lay it flat in the overhead bin, but it was an evening flight that wasn't 100% full, so there was space to lay it flat. I have seen where people said they had to roll it up to put in overhead bin and it wasn't too big of an issue. But, the flight attendants usually seem to be fairly accommodating. No matter how you travel with it, it will likely need to be steamed when you get there, just from being in the bag. So, plan ahead and have an appointment set to get it steamed when you get there or buy a travel steamer to take with you (about $30). I bought a small travel steamer and it worked fine to do it myself.

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  • We officially booked our flights today for our May 15th wedding! We booked with US airways because of the price and early arrival time. I looked up their policy on wedding dresses, and it looks like I will have to put it in the overhead bin. I will probably bring it in a regular dress bag and purchase some packing tissue paper to add to it to keep it fluffed up. I am sure it will need to be steamed when we get to the resort. I am thinking that I will purchase one of those $20 hand steamers, that way I can do Fiance's suit too, and I won't have to worry about paying for everything to be done.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • I didn't want to have to lug it around, so (per the recommendation of my dress shop and seamstress) I rolled it up and put it into a carry-on suitcase, and then I got it steamed once we were there.  

    I'm so glad I did it because there were multiple other brides on the different flights and due to the completely booked flight, they had to shove their dresses in the overhead bins and one had to actually check it.  

    Plus, it was just much easier to carry it around through security, customs and during our layover, and my husband wasn't able to get an idea of what it looked like when it was all tucked away. :)
  • saric83 said:
    I didn't want to have to lug it around, so (per the recommendation of my dress shop and seamstress) I rolled it up and put it into a carry-on suitcase, and then I got it steamed once we were there.  

    I'm so glad I did it because there were multiple other brides on the different flights and due to the completely booked flight, they had to shove their dresses in the overhead bins and one had to actually check it.  

    Plus, it was just much easier to carry it around through security, customs and during our layover, and my husband wasn't able to get an idea of what it looked like when it was all tucked away. :)

    An airline made her check it!? There's no way in heck I would let that dress out of my sight let alone check it with the rest of the luggage! My last suit case front pocket got ripped off in transit, I would have nightmares picturing that happening to my dress!
    LatilloJMuedog
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    saric83 said:
    I didn't want to have to lug it around, so (per the recommendation of my dress shop and seamstress) I rolled it up and put it into a carry-on suitcase, and then I got it steamed once we were there.  

    I'm so glad I did it because there were multiple other brides on the different flights and due to the completely booked flight, they had to shove their dresses in the overhead bins and one had to actually check it.  

    Plus, it was just much easier to carry it around through security, customs and during our layover, and my husband wasn't able to get an idea of what it looked like when it was all tucked away. :)

    An airline made her check it!? There's no way in heck I would let that dress out of my sight let alone check it with the rest of the luggage! My last suit case front pocket got ripped off in transit, I would have nightmares picturing that happening to my dress!

    I thought about checking mine on the way back, just so I didn't have to carry it.  But, there's no way I would have checked it on the way there.  Too many things can happen to it and it would be devastating to have something happen to it right before wedding.  Plus, I always carry on anything of any value (jewelry, electronics, etc.)... besides the sentimental value of the dress or the headaches it would cost if it were lost, I paid $1,200 for my dress + $200 alterations, so that is way too valuable of an item to trust to checked baggage... which is the main reason I didn't check it on the way back. 

    But on the way to the wedding, I'd change my flight if I had to, but they aren't checking my dress before my wedding. First, I'd try crying and hope for human decency and see if other passengers would check their bags to make room for my dress to fit as carry on, if that were an option.  As much as I hate checking bags, I'd gladly check mine if a bride needed to make room for her dress... especially after having experiences traveling with a wedding dress.  

    Oh, another tip for carrying dresses.  If you have metal hangers, or the top hook part is metal, put tape or fabric or something on them to pad them while travelling & carrying them. Those things can kill your hands.  I actually had bruises on my hands from it.

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  • Oye, this scares me.  I had never thought about the plane not having the room to hang it.  Eek!  I already called Delta and they said they should have room, but now I'm starting to worry a bit.  My fiance says I should just check it, but my dress was over 2k I'm not checking that!
  • I would not check it either. I will not be checking anything of value, such as wedding rings, wedding jewelry and Fiance's suit. I am the type that when I fly Fiance' and I only bring two personal items that fit under the seat. I think this may be the first time that Fiance' and I both have a carry on that we have to store above. I know I will want to either hang or store my dress up above folded in half.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Pardon me for reawakening a zombie here but I'll share my experience in case it will give other brides food for thought.

    My dress was a 50s/60s tea-length style with a full circle skirt so it was somewhat easier to pack for carryon and that's what I did. I put it in a hard-sided rolling bag and stuffed as much white tissue in and around it as possible. On our connecting flight I did have to let them gate-check it because of the size of the plane/full flight, and I did explain to the gate agent that it was my wedding dress so puh-leeze to try and mind it.

    I also put my shoes, undergarments and all our wedding paperwork in carryon which turned out to be a good thing as when we arrived at our destination...we discovered our bags had not made it on the plane overseas. ALARMING.

    We got our bags the next day, 24+ hours before the wedding but you never know. Unless you are very easy going and comfortable with the idea of buying something at a resort shop/local store to wear for your wedding, I'd definitely not check the dress. And don't forget your accessories and paperwork.

    Also I simply ironed my dress when we got to our venue...the dressmaker told me a dry hot iron was best on the silk and it worked perfectly!
  • I had to carry mine back to Michigan from Florida where I purchased it, and it all went smoothly. I flew Delta, called ahead and they said that it would be no problem, but it does count as one of your carry-on items. I was able to hang it in the first class closet (more like a half closet, only tall enough for suits but that was okay) with no questions asked even though we were flying coach. The only issue I had was that I don't have the strongest arms and that dress got HEAVY moving through the airport. It was really crowded as we were flying on Labor Day, so there wasn't really anywhere that I felt safe setting it down. Do some arm workouts before you carry it!
  • If you are flying first class it shouldn't be a problem to put it in the first class closet, as I did.  On the second leg of the flight we flew on a smaller plane so I had to put it in overhead storage.  One man thought it was a pillow and started moving it around!  On the way home I didn't care as much, just as long as it made it home!
  • I flew US Airways to St. Lucia and my husband and I both had our items and the flight attendant put them in this little cubby hole closet in the front. On the way back we packed them because we did trash the dress and suit in the ocean. Lol.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • I called Hawaiian and was told that it has to be in a carry on/overhead or checked baggage because the closet space has now been renovated to the comfort class seats airlines are now offering.  Upon research you can buy travel packing boxes and supplies-essentially a ton of white tissue paper and a box with a handle; or you can just look online for proper packing techniques.  I talked to my bridal shoppe and she offered to pack my dress in the suitcase for me prior to the flight.  She then recommended that as soon as we got to our destination to hang it up in a bathroom, turn on the hot water, and steam it.  Any wrinkles that are left can be taken care of with a hot/dry iron-she said to take a white cotton towel and lay it on the table top, then the dress (satin and chiffon) and then layer another white cotton towel on top.  The cotton will absorb the heat so the dress doesn't burn but the wrinkles will come out.  

    Hopefully this works as I don't want to spend another $75 to have wrinkles pressed when I get there.  She seemed really confident about it and said that she has never had a bride come back and say it didn't work....**fingers crossed**
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