If you’re boarding a flight for your next ski or snowboard vacation, a bit of pre-trip planning and preparation can really simplify your experience at the airport. As always, we're here with tips to help you get your ski/snowboard gear to your destination safely and with ease!
Get a Rolling Ski/Snowboard Bag
Rolling luggage has become the standard for modern air travel, and ski / snowboard bags are no exception! Airport baggage handlers are famously tough on luggage, so it pays to invest in a rolling ski bag with some padding.
For a premium travel experience, Kulkea’s Kantaja Double Roller Ski Bag ($279.95) provides plush accommodations for two sets of skis. Its proprietary Hitch Back™ system lets you click on a boot bag — simply lash your ski and boot bags together, and roll on up to the baggage check. By combining two bags into one package, you may even save yourself a checked-bag fee.
Pro tip: When you get home, you can store your (clean, dry) equipment in its bag, and it’ll be ready next time you head to the mountain.
When it comes to packing for a flight, space is money.
Since you’ll need to check your ski/snowboard bag no matter what, it makes sense to use all the space in the bag. Consider wrapping your gear in some of your clothing or outerwear. This conserves space in your regular luggage, and it adds extra padding to ensure that your skis/snowboard arrive at your destination safely.
You can also roll up base layers, socks and other small clothing items and stuff them into your boots and helmet. If you don’t have a hard case for your goggles, wrap them in something soft and place them inside your helmet to make sure they don’t get crushed in transit.
Know Your Airline’s Baggage Policies
Most carriers charge a fee for “oversize baggage.” This usually includes bags weighing more than 50 pounds, or with dimensions exceeding a certain number of inches. Most ski-length bags fall into the oversize category. If you’re not sure, review your airline’s baggage policy, or call the airline to confirm.
Some airlines let you check two bags of ski gear (ski bag/boot bag) as a single checked item, with one fee. If you’re not sure, ask! Airline baggage clerks actually have some discretion when it comes to charging baggage fees, and if you ask politely, sometimes they’ll help you out.
Ship Your Gear
If you’d rather skip the hassle (and expense) of flying with bulky ski/snowboard equipment, shipping services such as ShipSkis.com and LuggageFree.com offer door-to-door ski/snowboard shipping from your home to your ski-country destination. ShipSkis rates start at $34 each way — with $500 worth insurance included.
Looking for something else? Based in northeast PA, Ski Shack carries a full line of outdoor gear, clothing and accessories to help everyone in your family stay cozy, dry and safe in the great outdoors this season — no matter your experience or ability level.