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Old 12-11-2012, 11:39 PM   #1 
Aquabreeze
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Exclamation Transporting my Betta in Checked Luggage... without an insulated styrofoam box.

So, I have Bato in my dorm with me, and I'm leaving campus for holiday break midday tomorrow. The problem is, I can't leave him in my dorm (Not only will he starve to death in the three week interim, but Campus Safety will repossess him if they see him 'abandoned' like that.) and a friend of mine who is traveling by car who was originally going to take care of him, had to back out at the last minute. I've been researching how to take him on the plane safely with me, and either I put him in my carry-on and risk the TSA throwing him out (not to mention the very, very strict liquid limits) or I put him in my checked baggage. But for that, if my research is correct, I'd need an insulated Styrofoam box- which I don't have.

My flight doesn't leave until 4:30, but I have an exam tomorrow at 8 am that may go until 11. I could run to the local pet store afterwards, but it's too far to walk, and I don't know if I could get to the store, back to my dorm, and then off to the airport in time to catch my flight home.

So, my question to you guys is- is it worth the risk taking him in my carry-on? I'm terrified he'll be thrown away if I try to put him through. And are there any alternative ways I could pack him in my checked bag so that he'll be okay? The flight is about 2-3 hours.

I know he's not sick, but this does qualify as an emergency, since this really is time-sensitive. Please, I really need your help. Otherwise, I could risk losing my fish. D:
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:48 PM   #2 
AyalaCookiejar
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Could you contact the airport and ask them about your concerns? Or see if the college might have any styrofoam and a box and you could line it yourself? I know that my fish tanks came with styrofoam boards that I could cut and line a box with if I had to.. And many other packaged things do as well.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:53 PM   #3 
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mail him to yourself? did you call the terminal and ask?
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:07 AM   #4 
AyalaCookiejar
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^ you would still need an insulated box to mail him.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:29 AM   #5 
Aquabreeze
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I checked with the airline I'm flying with (AirTran), and according to the person I spoke to on the phone, they don't allow fish on the planes unless they're dead and edible. (Not happening.) And even if it's a checked bag, if that much liquid shows up on the scanner, they may take it out and remove it, so carry-on isn't an option. Is it worth risking in checked luggage?

As far as I know, there aren't any cardboard boxes and/or Styrofoam to be found in this dorm (granted, it is exam week and 1:30 am.) Ugh, I'm running out of options.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:36 AM   #6 
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That's quite a dilemma! I think if you wrapped him in the middle of all your clothes that might be insulated enough to take him in your checked bag, just make sure that he is double bagged and that the water level is low so he can breath without moving much during the flight, they get very disorriented.
But if it was me I would check with everybody you know that is driving home to see if they can watch him.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:39 AM   #7 
AyalaCookiejar
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I personally wouldn't risk it. I'm sorry that I can't offer more help. Shipping him is the only other option I would use but you do not have the supplies to do so. The only other thing would be to either find someone else to care for him. Have you had a chat with Campus Safety about it? I find it hard to believe that absolutely no one can sympathize with your situation.
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Old 12-12-2012, 03:21 AM   #8 
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I don't think cargo holds are pressurized OR heated. I know in order for a dog to go as checked baggage, it needs to be above 32F or the dog can't go. But where they keep dogs and where the luggage goes might be in 2 seperate compartments.

On the other hand, it can;t be healthy for a fish to go through the TSA scanner and every time I had to go through airport security, I wanted to deck the TSA agents. ( I lived in alaska for 12 years so I put in alot of time flying)

Some airline a few years ago got into serous hot water for forcing a young child to throw out a tiny turtle she had. The gate agent took it and threw it away in the trash. It was some discount airline - jetblue maybe?

My dorm used to get inspected when everyone left and then the power was turned off. if we left ANYTHING plugged in, we got a fine.
Could a professor watch him for you?

Last edited by Tikibirds; 12-12-2012 at 03:26 AM.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:37 AM   #9 
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have you tried lfs to see if they can fish sit for a fee? or see if local humane society could watch him for a donation?

Last edited by sandybottom; 12-12-2012 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:23 AM   #10 
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Craigslist look for a sitter that way, but be careful. You can also see if you have any vets that specialize in fish. I know when I lived in the Midwest several vets offered to watch pets for a few days, including fish.

Sucks you're having to struggle to find what to do with your betta.
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