What are the requirements to check-in a firearm on a flight from the US to Schiphol? What should be expected at Schiphol?

US flights requires firearms to be in locked in a hardside container and in check-in baggage. Not sure if the lock has to be of the "TSA" lock type. I was surprised that ammo can be checked-in.

  • 13
    I'd say the bigger issue is not the check-in, but obtaining permission from the Dutch government to import a firearm and ensure you comply with all of their gun-related laws. Aug 20, 2016 at 1:39
  • 2
    The lock for a firearm case must not be a TSA lock. TSA will come out to the check-in counter to conduct the security inspection of the bag your firearm is in, or you will go into a back area. Aug 20, 2016 at 3:18
  • You also have the issue of transits. Some countries may have restrictions on firearms in transit, even if you don't clear immigration or customs (e.g. the UK). Aug 20, 2016 at 3:20
  • 2
    KLM has some information about permits for the Netherlands: klm.com/travel/us_en/prepare_for_travel/baggage/…. Also, more relevant to the actual question, requirements for packing firearms: klm.com/travel/us_en/prepare_for_travel/baggage/…
    – phoog
    Aug 20, 2016 at 5:03

1 Answer 1


I imagine that KLM's procedures for flying with firearms to the Netherlands should be indicative of the typical requirements, should other airlines allow their transport at all. KLM's page on weapons states:

Reservation, documents and licences

To be able to take firearms and/or ammunition with you on a flight, you will need to take the following 3 steps:

  1. Make a reservation via your travel agent or via KLM Telephone Reservations

  2. Make sure that you have these documents:

    • A licence for the firearm in question
    • Import and export licences for the countries in question
    • A filled in and signed declaration for transportation of arms and ammunition
  3. Apply for a licence from the Dutch customs authorities for travel with weapons and/or ammunition to, from or via the Netherlands

Apply for a licence to travel with weapons

To gain permission to transport firearms and ammunition, you need to complete an application form for your outward and return trip, and provide copies of the following documents:

  • Passport of the weapons licence holder
  • The weapons licence
  • The invitation or permission of the country in which the hunting will take place

The page also lists exceptions for NL and EU residents and military personnel in certain circumstances.

The declaration form details how you should pack the firearm and ammunition such as ensuring the weapon is unloaded and separated from ammunition and in a hard container. The airline will follow its own procedures to ensure the firearm is securely transported to your destination.

  • 5
    As far as I am aware (friends shoot for sport) the only reason for guns to be allowed within the Netherlands is for competing in official shooting competitions. There might be some options for hunting, but hunting within the Netherlands is really restricted. Carrying guns within the country is also rules by law, only allowed as far as needed to go to competition or training, by direct route only. (Not needed to be the shortest but roundabout rambling not allowed.)
    – Willeke
    Aug 20, 2016 at 9:38
  • @Willeke I suspect you're right and where it says "hunting" in that page, it means both hunting and sporting competitions.
    – Berwyn
    Aug 20, 2016 at 19:26

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