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'How Do I Travel with a Snowboard as Checked Luggage?'

January 14, 2014 at 11:06 AM | by | ()

With each new season comes new questions about what passengers can and cannot take onboard a plane. Thus, we'll be addressing some of the most popular requests with a series called, "Got Baggage."

So, how to fly on a commercial airplane with a snowboard?

Well, the easy answer is that snowboards are not allowed as a carry-on item for any airline, and it must be checked. Here, the details vary with the airline, with the exception that one snowboard bag plus boot bag counts as one piece of checked luggage, for which you will have to pay the checked baggage fee (if the airline charges for baggage).

Before handing over the money to check your snowboard, however, take advantage of any extra space in the case to pack your cold weather gear. Shove scarves, layering shirts, everything you can in there without going over baggage weight. This way you're less likely to need to check a second bag.

Airlines which do not charge for the first checked bag, like JetBlue and Southwest will not charge extra to check a snowboard bag as your first item.

Note that some airlines, like Air Canada, require you to check your snowboard in a hard-shell case. Others are fine with soft snowboard bags, so long as they travel well.

Regardless of airline or destination, know that you may have to forego the usual baggage claim carousel and seek out the oversize baggage area. When you don't see your bag heading down the chute, this is the next logical place to look.

For individual airline fees and detailed requirements, check with your carrier or refer to this handy guide from Snowpak.com.

[Photo: Kai MacMahon]

Archived Comments:

Waste of time

it's checked baggage, pay the fee. end of story. surfboards on the other hand, that's something article worthy.