Bali, Australia, Miami … All these names make most surfers dream, but you still have to go! It’s a pain that many surfers know about. In a sport where the equipment is restrictive and where the practitioners are moved quite regularly, things can quickly get complicated. So you will quickly understand that the words airplane and surfboard do not go together at first glance. Like all so-called “exceptional” objects, transport by plane is something to be expected, especially since the sliding gear is fragile.
Even on a smaller scale, in a van or by train, traveling with your SUP or windsurfing board is not easy and it takes time and a lot of padding. So what should you prepare?
What should you prepare to travel with a board on a Delta Airlines plane?
Before you go, when researching ticket prices, pay attention to the wording of the US airline’s baggage policy.
Be aware that the size of your surfboard can have an impact on the final price of the flight. A bag of three six-foot short boards may actually cost less than a nine-foot long board depending on dimensional loads, also, be aware of your carrier’s baggage embargoes.
DAL does not accept surfboards whose exterior linear dimensions (length + width + height) exceed 115 linear inches (292 cm), or if their weight exceeds 50 Ibs.
Delta Airlines charges $150 for a bag containing a maximum of 2 surfboards, weighing up to 70 Ibs (32 kg) and not exceeding 115 inches (290 cm). Between Honolulu and Maui (Hawaii), $20. You must contact and verify with the reservation department that your boards will be accepted.
How to protect your SUP, Surf or Windsurf board when traveling by plane?
We all know that our equipment, gear or even “quivers” are not easily transportable. And it gets more complicated when it comes to taking a plane, especially when we see all of his documentaries on baggage handlers, in short. The biggest stars of water sports have all had unpleasant surprises when they picked up their boards.
Buy a heavy board cover. To increase the chances of free travel, buy a board bag. While some people claim you can travel safely without a board bag, it’s questionable (especially if you find it split in half on the other end of your flight). Ideally, buy a boardbag that is 15 centimeters (5.9 inches) longer than your longest board; this extra length leaves room for more padding in your bag. If your gear is very heavy, opt for roller surf bags. Choose pre-padded covers of 3 to 5mm. Otherwise, stuff it yourself with your clothes.
Remove the fins from your board. If you have removable fins such as FCS, O’Fish or Excel Fins, it is a good idea to remove them to avoid catching surrounding objects. A flat object travels more serenely, believe us. Wrap the removed fins in a towel and keep them with your board, along with the fin key. If you forget the aileron key, your efforts are wasted, so make sure it’s there before you zip up. If you have standard fins, place a fin box around the fins to protect them.
Remove the old wax from your board. If you skip this step, your cold water surf wax will melt all over your board bag when you land in the tropics. And that’s not really uncool, especially if like me, you mix your clothes with your surf bag … Buy a nose bumper! And that’s all ! No discussion possible.
Slip the board in a sock cover then in bubble wrap. This is another layer of protection that will go inside the bag.
Stuff your board-bag with your clothes. And use whatever feels right to protect your gear even more.
Write fragile on the bag. You are ready to go and reach your vacation destination with the One Piece Board. All you have to do is survive the air holes.
These little tips have been proven in over a hundred trips. Nor does it guarantee total protection, so far there is no other solution that would be preferable. Despite all this, it still happens frequently that the boards remain at the departure airport, without your being notified. So check all these points one by one, starting with the regulations specific to your airline.
The regulations and costs of transporting surfboards at Delta Airlines
Two boards can be carried in one bag for 130 € and that for all other destinations. The company does not guarantee breakage on this type of board. You may need to take out surfboard insurance.