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Are you allowed to carry a handgun while you travel in your vehicle?

If you want to travel and take your weapon with you, then it’s a good idea to know the laws that will apply to you while you do. Depending on where you plan to go, you may be able to take your gun without violating any state or federal laws. In some states, though, you will not be able to bring your gun or have it without the right documentation.

Intestate travel with a gun, which is travel between states, gets tricky because states handle their gun laws independently. For example, both South Carolina and Alabama may recognize the same permit. In Kentucky, you don’t need a license to carry. In South Dakota, open carry is legal without a license.

If you don’t have a permit at all, then entering another state that doesn’t require a permit usually is fine. Entering a strict gun-law state could be problematic. 

Regardless of the gun laws, the Gun Control Act of 1986 states that you may travel through restricted states with your gun regardless of if you have a permit. However, that gun does have to be in a locked case and unloaded. It also has to be in an inaccessible location, such as your passenger’s glove box or the trunk, and you have to store your ammunition in a separate place. 

What happens if you get stopped without your gun locked up?

It’s a violation of federal law to travel with a gun in a way that you’re not permitted to do so. Doing so may also violate state laws. If you’re not sure what to do, or if police arrested you for possessing a weapon in a new state, then you will want to look into your legal rights and take action to defend yourself.