How I bring my IMac 21″ and Wacom Cintiq 22″ by plane ! | TIP130

I have just flied back to my hometown in France where I will set up a new office space to have more time to create new tutorials and great content for designers. Keep posted !

Today I share with you an experience you may face as well, and may also give you a lot of “butterflies in the stomach” : Bring your IMac 21” and Wacom Cintiq 22”HD Touch abroad.

A baggage handler who doesn’t care much about traveller’s baggage.

I took a long distance flight (13 hours flight from Singapore to France) with my heavy and fragile IT equipment and I preyed they won’t be damaged in the cargo compartment of the plane.

I preyed that my IT equipment

would not be damaged

in the cargo compartment of the plane.

Why so worried?

Have you ever seen how baggage handlers throw our luggage to the lorry ? The treatment is really rough. You may have a quick look at this video. No care policy.

How baggage handlers throw your baggage out of the plane. 

Why airplanes are so modern,

and the baggage transportation so primitive ?

Even Potato bags may be handled with more care. Since, I became paranoid and reluctant to let my IT equipment to the Cargo compartment. However, it seams that we don’t have any alternative.

Before the flight I browsed a lot of forums and websites to look for solutions, but nothing concrete. So I decided to share my experience with you guys.

How I moved all my stuffs ?

IMac 21.5


How to rise your baggage allowance ?

Hand carry your laptop and camera.

They are not counted in

the weight and number of item allowance.

In theory, hand carry baggage allowance are pretty flexible, but baggage for cargo compartment are strict. If you need to carry more weight than allowed, you have to hand carry extra kg. I know that you are going to tell me that the weight is also limited. True. But there is a trick.
Note that as soon as you have been through the check-in counter, you are free to move. There is no more control about the weight, size and number of your hand carry baggage.
By default you have 7 kg allowed to hand carry. If the check-in counter agent wants to weight your hand carry bags, remember to mention you carry your laptop and camera with you. It should be enough to let you go without paying extra fees for the extra weight. 🙂


Never exceed 32 kg for 1 baggage.

They will ask you to repack it on the spot.


I decided to hand carry my IMac 21”. I wish I could bring the original box, but it was too big. So I protect my computer with Bubble wrap and a A3 plastic folder for the screen.

Carry IMac in the plane
I carried my Imac and the Cintiq Pod as well.

The Wacom Cintiq Pod is pretty heavy and cumbersome. I could have let it in the original box but I replaced it by 2 cushions to absorb the shocks (to protect the screen tablet).

But I realised I could have let it in the original box with the original protection foam. When I reached the check-in counter, the agent asked me about the content.

  • I said it’s a screen.
  • The agent asked: Is it fragile?
  • YES very much ! Super fragile !
  • So he sticked several stickers mentioning “Handle with care”. To be honest, I doubted that these stickers would protect better the Cintiq.
  • But, he didn’t let my Cintiq box go to the treadmill.
    He asked me to put it at a specific trolley for FRAGILE items ! It means that my box will not follow the regular rude baggage journey. A “special team” would deliver it with care.
  • So, when I reached the airport in France, my luggage never came from the regular treadmill. A hostess told me I could find my box in a specific trolley for Fragile items. Awesome!
  • My Cintiq box arrived in perfect condition ! Same condition as when I packed it.

Singapore Airline website never mentions about this service. I recommend you to call your airline company before booking your ticket and see if you can benefit of this “baggage extra care service”.

Baggage airplane Cintiq Wacom Imac
After being so worried, I received back all my stuff in good condition. Note the extra white foam I added to disperse the shock along the box edges in case it would be thrown like a potato bag.

Thanks Singapore Airlines for taking care of the baggage. I hope that all airline company will follow your path.

Are you a traveling designer ?
What’s your tricks to bring along your equipment ?
Let me know n the comments.

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About The Author


Hello ! My name is Chou-Tac. I am a product designer from France. If the sketching methods I’ve acquired aid me in my life and in my industrial design career, I believe that they can also help you reach your design goal as a student or professional. My aim to help you all along with your design projects and journey. Anytime, feel free to leave a comment in the blog or send me an email at [email protected] : )


  • Ivan Santos

    Reply Reply October 6, 2018

    Oh, man. That’s great news! I’m on a similar situation with my Wacom 21ux. Where did you travel to France from, mate? Cheers!

    • Chou-Tac

      Reply Reply October 7, 2018

      I was coming from Singapore !

      Later on, I did travel again with multiple times !

  • Silvia Grav

    Reply Reply January 16, 2017

    thanks A LOT for this!

  • Mag

    Reply Reply August 27, 2016

    Hi Chou,

    Did you carry your imac as your carry-on luggage?!

    • Chou Tac

      Reply Reply August 28, 2016

      Hello Mag, Yes I did 🙂

      Take note that even if an airline company says that they allow only one handcarry luggage, they are ok to let you bring one more for your laptop or camera. In that case, I bring a laptop and my iMac. 🙂

  • Jonatan

    Reply Reply June 16, 2016

    Hey bro, That big box was the Imac? I have a 21.5 too and I’m worried about travel with him from Colombia to Canada, Any other recommendation?

    • Chou-Tac

      Reply Reply June 16, 2016

      Hello Jonatan,

      This big box is from my Cintiq 22HD. I covered the Imac with my cushion, and try to avoid adding heavy stuff inside.

      At the end, it went all fine. The crew asked me if it was fragile. I told them it was an expensive screen. So they did separate my box from the rest. I had to bring it to a huge trolley for fragile items.

      When I received back the box in France, I didn’t see any damage on the box. 🙂 The only thing is that they will take longer to deliver it to you. It won’t come from the usual conveyor belt, but on a separate trolley.

      Make sure your airline do that as well :).


  • Nacho

    Reply Reply January 19, 2016

    Hey! What an incredible experience! I know because I did the same with my iMac from my Hometown in Uruguay to Munich and as well as as you, after arrival my iMac was delivered in an extra area for very fragile items 🙂

    Before the flight: original package + air bubble wrap + calls to airline, airport and Apple Store to know if they had any other recommendation.

    By the way, nice trick for the Cintiq 13! Now I’m only missing the Cintiq 13 🙂

    • Chou-Tac

      Reply Reply January 20, 2016

      Haha we were both super scared for our “Big baby Imac” !

      See you Nacho !

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