Never leave your guitar in a car on a hot or sunny day. As the car increases in temperature, the wood contracts and the glue on your instrument will soften which could result in failure of the joint(s).
If you must travel with your instrument in a hot vehicle, please take care to keep it out of direct heat and sunlight. The best place is in the back seat, as there is more airflow. Don’t leave your guitar in a vehicle that is so warm you wouldn’t feel comfortable leaving a dog or small child
Before you arrive at the airport, prepare your instrument by de-tensioning the strings. Secure any items that might be in your instrument case. It is good to place some soft padding under the headstock area to provide cushioned support.
Hard shell cases will provide some level of protection. Most cases were not designed to provide absolute protection through the turbulent skies. The best place to have your guitar when traveling by air is onboard, either in the overhead compartment or the suit locker.
Most airlines today will insist that you check your guitar as baggage. Special services, such as special handling and identification, are available for valuable items. Please make sure to ask about these at the check-in counter. When possible, avoid signing any document that limits the airline’s liability for damage.
In 2015, the United States of America issued new rules about the transport of musical instruments by an airline. Airlines must accept musical instruments as checked baggage, but those instruments must follow the size and weight limitations.
If you are traveling on a United States carrier and want to learn more about these rule changes please visit the following links: