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Top 10 Questions About Traveling With Firearms

August 24, 20225 min read

Here are the top 10 questions I receive about transporting a firearm in Florida, with or without a Florida concealed carry.

Question #1 Can I legally transport a firearm while traveling through a highly restricted state? 

Yes, one of the provisions of the Firearm Owners Protection Act passed in 1986 is called the Safe Passage provision. Here's what it says;

US Code 18 USC 926A - Notwithstanding any other provision of any law or any rule or regulation of a State or any political subdivision thereof, any person who is not otherwise prohibited by this chapter from transporting, shipping, or receiving a firearm shall be entitled to transport a firearm for any lawful purpose from any place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm to any other place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm if, during such transportation the firearm is unloaded, and neither the firearm nor any ammunition being transported is readily accessible or is directly accessible from the passenger compartment of such transporting vehicle: Provided, That in the case of a vehicle without a compartment separate from the driver’s compartment the firearm or ammunition shall be contained in a locked container other than the glove compartment or console.

According to the federal law, as long as you follow a few simple guidelines, it is lawful to transport a firearm through a highly restricted state like New York, New Jersey, Illinois, or California.

However, I would also encourage you to research the specific laws for each state you will be entering, and it’s always recommended to speak to a qualified attorney. 

Question #2 Does Florida have a three-step rule? 
Currently, the three-step rule is one of the biggest myths that exists in Florida. The three-step rules says that in order to transport a firearm inside of a vehicle, there are three distinct actions a person must take to gain access to the firearm. For example, 

Step 1: The firearm is unloaded

Step 2: The firearm is placed inside of a zippered gun bag 

Step 3: The gun case is locked inside the glove box.

If a person needed to gain access to the firearm for self-defense, they would first have to unlock and open the glove box. Next, they would have to remove the firearm from the gun case. Finally, they would have to load the firearm. Needless to say, this is extremely time-consuming, and our victim would probably be dead by the time they have access to the firearm. 

Despite the fact that the three-step rule has never existed in the state of Florida, it is still frequently stated as fact by uneducated gun owners and law enforcement officers. 

Question #3 Are there any changes in reciprocity with a Florida non-resident concealed carry permit? 

Yes, some states do not honor a non-resident concealed weapons permit from the State of Florida. These states include Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Colorado, just to name a few. However, this list is always changing, so be sure to research the laws before traveling to another state. 

Question #4 What is the minimum age to have a firearm inside of a vehicle? 

The minimum age to possess a firearm inside of a vehicle is 18 years old. 

Question #5 Should I get a carry permit from more than one state? 

It depends. Recently, one of my students was upset because Washington State does not recognize the Florida concealed weapons permit. This individual frequently travels to Washington to visit friends and family and would like to continue carrying a firearm while in the state. I suggested that he apply for a non-resident carry permit from the State of Washington. This would allow him to conceal his firearm across the country with his Florida carry permit and continue carrying a firearm once in Washington. 

Question #6 What are the requirements for transporting a firearm with a convicted felon in the vehicle? 

The primary requirement is that the firearm must never be in the felon’s possession. In my opinion, the best thing to do is to keep the firearm physically on your body. I think it would be very dangerous to keep a firearm in the glove box or center console with a prohibited person in the vehicle. If you were stopped by the police and the officer discovered the firearm, I think they would assume that it was in the possession of the felon, and they could go to prison.  

Question #7 Is it legal to bring a firearm or ammunition on an airplane inside your carry-on luggage? 
Absolutely not. 

Question #8 What are the rules for carrying a firearm across state lines in an RV? 
The requirements for transporting a firearm across state lines in an RV are the exact same as if you were traveling in a car. 

Question #9 What would happen if someone saw my firearm while I’m riding on a motorcycle? 

In the state of Florida, the accidental showing of your firearm is not a crime. However, there is a major difference between your shirt accidentally blowing up and you lifting your shirt up to scare another driver. Unfortunately, most people are afraid of firearms, and if a driver sees your firearm, they may call 911. I personally think it’s best to prevent this type of scenario from ever occurring. 

Question #10 Can I have a rifle or shotgun in plain view on a rifle rack? 
Even if the answer is yes, is it really worth it? Criminals’ favorite item to steal is firearms because they can be sold on the street very easily for top dollar. Second, do you really want to take the chance of some anti-gun nut calling 911? I personally don’t have enough time in my day to deal with the police or a SWAT team surrounding my vehicle. 

That's all I have for today. So until next time keep training and stay safe...

Ryan G. Thomas

P.S. You’re one step away from getting your Florida concealed carry permit….FAST & EASY…

And for a limited time you can watch the concealed carry course online for free... Click here to get started...

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Ryan G. Thomas

Ryan believes a trained and aware citizen is the best way to minimize crime, victims and senseless acts of violence. Ryan is a veteran of the United States Air Force and a father of three beautiful children. Ryan and his wife Tiffany met while doing inner city ministry for Operation Explosion in Tampa 12 years ago. He is passionate about God, his family, and his community. Ryan has a passion for the 2nd amendment and believes all Americans should have the right and ability to protect themselves and their families.

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