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Taking Bugs Abrord

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on my reacent trip to poland i took with me some travle bugs. the were packed in my hand luggage so i could take photos of them on the plane. but when passing through customs i got stopped an my bag searched. they found the bugs an questioned me. how do you explane to customs why you are carring round a champaine cork,a small figure of a girl an a 10mm spanner all of which are attatched to dog tags.

sadly the spanner was confiscated just in cace i dismantled the plane in a moment of bordem on the flight.

has any one elce had problems with customs.


ps the 10mm spanner was my own bug (how was i to no that there not allowed!!)



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In the (very few) cases I've needed to explain what it's all about, I've always just said it's a "sort of treasure hunt" - which is perfectly true, but easy for the other person to understand.


Unfortunately though, tools simply aren't allowed in hand baggage these days, so nothing you could have said would have helped with that one. There should have been notices displayed at check-in and before security. Looking on the bright side though, it's probably less embarrassing to have your own bug confiscated than someone else's!

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Its a weird world these days - particularly when you travel. I shall do my best not to climb onto my hobby horse and rant.


I take particular exception to the Eurotunnel trick: I arrive just in time for our crossing, dont spend £7821.45 at the 'shopping experience' but seek to drive straight through with the boarding pass to the train. "Excuse me sir - you have been randomly selected for a security search." "My train closes boarding in 5 minutes". "I'm terribly sorry SIR, but that is of no interest to us" .... and we miss the train - only for the next to be cancelled and the one after that to be late.


The only time the 'search' worked in my favour was when the passports were out of date. After the search had finished, the passport office official saw I was steaming and when I offered the passports just laughed, didnt look at them and said "If you hurry you'll just make the next train" - and so we travelled with out of date passports.


So losing the odd travel bug: typical of this modern world.



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Best packed in hand luggage anything that might be deemed a dangerous item!

On the point of security checks at the tunnel.i use it probably half a dozen times a month,Personally i would rather spend 2 mins being checked than be a victim of a terrorist attack.

Any likely uses of the tunnel should allow the check in time on the ticket its 40 mins before departure i think

Edited by tteggod trackers
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Whilst flying last week, I looked into the clear container of confiscated items at the boarding desk, and spotted all sorts of expensive Leathermans, swiss army knives etc. I asked the chap what becomes of them when the box was full. he informed me that they are all handed to the police who melt them down! Needless to say, my highly offensive (6 inch long bamboo) knitting needles had been safely packed in my hold luggage. It's inconvenient, but not as inconvenient as the plane being hi-jacked, I reckon.


If you want a rant, look out for compulsary ID cards sneaking in via the back door coming soon to a House of Commons near you (tonight).

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The last time we had ID cards, it took a mass act of public disobedience to get rid of them. Introduced as a war time measure in 1939 and still in use 10 years later, it wasn't the government who volunteered to give them up but people standing up to the police and refusing to show them when asked. Are we as brave as our forefathers.

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Very few of these measures have anything to do - at least in practice - with preventing hijacks. It seems to be more or less trivial for the even-slightly-determined journalist to smuggle anything they want on to a plane, so I don't suppose the average terrorist will have much trouble.


However, anything that reduces the amount of sharp objects that come to hand when passengers get drunk, has to be good news for the poor cabin crew.


I like the question at check-in, "has anyone given you anything to bring on board?". Hmm, let's see... there's this little teddy, and this porcelain cow, and this bunch of keyrings, and they're all attached to little metal tags... shall I say "yes"?

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Why exactly did you leave the transit lounge, clear customs and immigration, walk 500 metres into the gounds of an airport hotel, take five mysterious

objects from a hidden ammunition box, return to the airport and clear customes and immigration again. Are you allergic to latex.

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How about carrying with you a printout of the nearest TB hotel for every airport you're gonna be flying through. Then if customs insist on confiscating a TB, just hand it over with a printout and say


"Fair enough but would you mind popping by here when you finish your shift and put it into the ammo box?"


You never know you could recruit some more Geocachers!

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I like the question at check-in, "has anyone given you anything to bring on board?". Hmm, let's see... there's this little teddy, and this porcelain cow, and this bunch of keyrings, and they're all attached to little metal tags... shall I say "yes"?

I think it's commonly believed that if you say "yes" you won't be allowed on the plane, but while travelling to my company's head office I quite often have bits and pieces for other people, and nothing bad has ever happened to me. They just want to know about the item to make sure you haven't been tricked into taking a bomb on board.


If it's in your hand luggage, they sometimes (always?) ask you to take it out and show it to them at the security point.


I just can't see them being bothered by a teddy, a porcelain cow and a bunch of keyrings, however weird a set of items that might be. The problem with the spanner was, unfortunately, that even a teeny tiny spanner is on the list of things specifically banned from hand baggage.

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