Hand carried on a plane or in a car..
What is the recommended way to ship a string instrument?
..I ship very few instruments..but have shipped them to Alaska,IL,and a few to HI...People from Oregon drive up,about every two months..
Lets' see..Fedex likes to leave them on your porch..the DAY BEFORE
they said they were going to deliver it..Probably packed in a full size guitar box marked FENDER
..Stolen off the porch...
Wailuki ,Maui..USPS..looked like they drop kicked a couple ukuleles overpacked..insured for $1500...broke a rib inside one...insurance wouldn't pay unless they confiscate BOTH...
UPS..haven't used them in years..since they refused to pay for an insured package..
Other than that..I've been pretty lucky.I can't guarantee how items are shipped to me.That little Hawaiian one was in a small guitar box,packed with shipping paper, and wrapped in a few layers of smaller bubblewrap..They had to try hard to break it..and succeeded..NEVER WRITE "FRAGILE" ON A BOX..They seem to see that as a challenge
I overpack items going out..it's a crap shoot which shipper is better(or worse)..Fedex is delivering through USPS now..so you get two carriers with using them.I like that because my mail carrier knows better than leaving a package on my porch(Fedex doesn't and isn't responsible as far as delivering on when their website tracking says it will be).....I get a notice from my carrier instead..pick it up..or deliver the next day.I've actually watched tracking and picked them up at my city PO before it gets with the carrier..
My Traveler ukuleles(as opposed to the other website traveler's statistics:
The cedar one is a full size tenor that weighs 14.3 ounces(well..it does have heavy tuners
..17" scale,24-1/2" long,9"wide,and 3"+ deep),has a deeper,nicer tone than 90% of the other tenors out there..and a 10 Oz Martin Style 0 Soprano that I cut about a third of the depth off(
..Now that takes nerve!
)....If they break..I can find another Martin to hack..or find another 2x8x18" piece of 20 year old western red cedar in my garage to make a new tenor teardrop..
..That's the advantage of building your own...
But..I don't hike in the rain,don't use inflatables..and do carry firestarters..