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Old     (Nessticles)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-28-2019, 3:30 PM Reply   
For those with experience, please chime in with helpful tips and tricks when traveling by plane with a wakeboard. It's a high end board, not a throw-down, so I want it to arrive in good shape. I have a quality, padded board bag, too. Leave boots on ready to rip? Take em off and box em? Thanks
Old     (tripsw)      Join Date: May 2006       05-28-2019, 3:56 PM Reply   
I'd leave bindings on. And use a "golf"bag to hopefully avoid paying extra. Though nowadays you pay extra for everything it seems, probably also golf bags.
Old     (Nessticles)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-28-2019, 4:04 PM Reply   
Thanks. I have heard that since Surfing is the official State Sport of CA, there is no oversize or excess baggage fee for surf, snow or wakeboards on departures to or from California. I do have a Ronix golf bag, too. Just want to ensure the protection of my shred stick.
Old     (paulharenberg)      Join Date: Jul 2007       05-29-2019, 6:13 AM Reply   
I haven't traveled with a board in several years (maybe since 2013 or so). We started shipping our boards to our location since it was easier and cheaper.

I would highly recommend you check with your airline about the baggage fees.

I have seen/heard stories of people trying to check wakeboards, and since there isn't a wakeboard category it being charged as a surfboard which is a lot more than golf clubs or a snowboard.

I have a regular bag, LF weekender maybe, not a golf bag, and one time checking it in the with the airline the attendant called it a golf bag and i didn't correct her. Another time they asked what it was and I called it a snowboard. I usually take off the bindings and put that in my bigger luggage bag, but i travel with two boards to cable parks since I usually break one.

I hope your California theory is true, but nothing I have learned in my life makes me think that it is. I don't see it being an accepted practice across all airlines flying to California, let alone one.

Good luck. If the airline doesn't have a wakeboard category DO NOT call it a wakeboard.
Old     (ATB0713)      Join Date: Oct 2013 Location: Massachusetts       05-29-2019, 7:37 AM Reply   
2nd on the do not call it a wakeboard. just call it a surf/snowboard, whatever you think you'll get away with.

i've traveled with snowboards a few times in padded bags, i've added my own padding to the tip/tail and edges for added support. They're going to throw around your board like its a peice of junk.
Old     (chillinoj)      Join Date: May 2009       05-29-2019, 12:09 PM Reply   
+1 for just say snowboard.

I usually leave the bindings on because I'm too lazy, but taking them off makes it pretty easy to put 2-3 complete setups in a bag. I also usually "wrap" the tip/fins with my vest or a towel to help protect it.

Also one of my favorite reasons to fly Southwest Airlines, because I have used both free bags as board bags on bigger trips.
Old     (Surfer101)      Join Date: Oct 2015       05-30-2019, 7:21 AM Reply   
If flying with delta do not call it a wakeboard, surfboard or anything like that you will be charged 150 each way. Go spend 200 bucks on a golf wakeboard bag from either liquid force or slingshot and you will be able to check it no questions asked. Just make sure you throw a bunch of towels and vests around the board to protect it.
Old     (theloungelife)      Join Date: Jun 2012 Location: Salt Lake City, UT       05-31-2019, 8:35 AM Reply   
Make sure to read the fine print of the baggage policy for each airline. Saying it is a snowboard is usually pretty safe. Depending where you are flying to/from, it might be a strange thing to fly with. Some airlines will allow "waterski equipment". I've said that in the past as well. Just make sure whatever you say is in line with their baggage policy. As for the "golf bag" thing, I had one strange experience where I was told my "clubs" wouldn't be replaced if damaged. I then told them it was waterski equipment and then I was all set.

As for padding, I suggest wrapping in towels/vest etc. I once had my board delam'd/punctured on a southwest flight. They did end up taking care of me, but it was a bummer and multiple phone calls before it was finalized.
Old     (Shawn)      Join Date: Aug 2011       06-11-2019, 12:32 PM Reply   
Pull the fins off and call it a snowboard. Fins are what a lot of airlines are afraid of on both damage to the board and slicing through other luggage which is why they may bump you to surfboard prcing.

Traveled a few tip I got was to go pick up that pipe insulation with a slit down the middle and warp the edges of the board with it held in place with some masking tape for added protection against being dropped on edge.
Old     (Nessticles)      Join Date: Mar 2010       06-27-2019, 12:43 PM Reply   
Update: It was true! I put it in a padded Ronix golf bag with some vests, towels and cardboard. Arrived unharmed. More damage down at the local cable park. Surfing is indeed the state sport of CA, so all board/bags under a certain length are not assessed an oversize baggage fee. Thats for surf, snow, wake, or skate. Hell, even kneeboarding. Still had to pay the normal checked bag fee of $30, however. United Airlines.


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