Can you bring a surfboard on a plane? Sure! However, you will need to check with the specific airline you are flying with to see what the size or weight limit is for surfboards and if there is an oversize fee.
Many airlines will allow you to bring a surfboard as checked luggage, but the size of a surfboard prevents it from being brought onboard as carry-on item. They may also have specific packaging requirements or board bag fees.
We’ll take a look the best way to travel by air for your next surf trip on domestic flights within the United States, and see what their surfboard policy is.
As always, check with your specific airline and TSA to make sure you have the most up to date and accurate information before traveling.
Can You Bring a Surfboardd On a Plane? Linear Length
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane? In the context of airline travel, luggage is often subject to size restrictions, and the linear dimensions of a suitcase or sports equipment are used to determine if it is within the size limits for check-in luggage.
The linear dimensions of luggage are usually measured in inches, and they are calculated by adding together the length, width, and height of the suitcase, or longboard.
In addition, because of luggage bin size differences, some airlines have different bag restrictions depending on what type of aircraft operates the flight such as Airbus, Boeing, or regional jets (Express operated flights). In these cases you may need to double check with the airline or obtain prior approval.
As an example, if a regular piece of luggage, surfboard or large musical instrument measures 80 inches in length, 20 inches in width, and 6 inches in height, its linear total dimensions would be 106 inches (80 + 20 + 6). Different airlines have different maximum size restrictions for luggage and oversize charges, so it is important to check with the specific airline to determine what the maximum allowed linear dimensions are for carry-on or checked baggage.
Packaging Your Surfboard
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane? To prepare your surfboard for transport as checked baggage, you will need to package in the right board bag that is specifically designed for surfboards. The container should be large enough to accommodate the surfboard without forcing it, and should have enough padding to protect the board during transport. You should also remove any fins or other protruding parts from the board, as these can be damaged during handling. Your best bet is to also protect your board with packing material such as bubble wrap or foam pipe insulation.
|When checking your surfboard, help protect it by investing in a surfboard travel bag or hard-sided case. Some cases and duffel bags can double as a checked bag, with clothes and other items stored around the bag.|
The Pro-Lite Finless bag from Amazon is a recognized surfboard bag and one of the top-rated choices, and Amazon’s choice.
Here’s a link to some of other top-rated bags to keep your new board from getting damaged
Once your surfboard is properly packaged, you can check it in at the airport as you would any other piece of luggage. Just be sure to label the container with your contact information, and to secure any straps or handles to prevent them from coming loose during transport.
What Does the TSA Say?
The TSA (Transportation Security Administration) doesn’t address surfboards on their website, but they did Tweet about it on social media. They say surfboards just need to be checked.
Can You Bring a Surfboard On a Plane? What the Airlines Say
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane? Yes, as long as it meets the size limit and weight restrictions. You will need to check with your specific airline for their different rules on size and weight restrictions, or a specialty sports bag fee, which we will list below.
Major airlines also can have different requirements for international flights outside of North American, such as maximum size or maximum weight, so be sure to check their page if that applies. Also if you’re flying internationally on airlines such as British Airways or Virgin Atlantic, Air New Zealand, South African Airways, or Air France, these airlines will have different policies and different regulations.
It’s important to check for surfboard baggage fees, as the free baggage allowance usually doesn’t apply. Fees can add up for larger longboards on some airlines. The last thing you want is a $100 excess baggage charge or a large surfboard fee from airline staff at the check-in counter.
It’s also worth noting that your baggage allowance will differ depending on whether you’re flying economy or first class. Most of the policies listed are for economy-class passengers.
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Alaska? Travelling on an Alaska Airlines flight, here’s a Link to their policies
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying American? Here’s a link to the American Airlines policies
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Avelo?
Link to their baggage policy page
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Delta?
Surfboard Checked Bag Requirements and Fees
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Frontier? Frontier charges normal checked bag prices, including oversize and overweight fees which can be found here
For surfboard specific info, see their fragile items page.
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Hawaiian? As a popular surfing destination, Hawaiian’s page has plenty of information on traveling with surfboards. Their page has more info than any other airline, and their guide could prove useful if flying on other airlines,
You are welcome to check surfboards, kiteboards, paddleboards, and wakeboards for a transportation fee. See their page for more info.
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Southwest?
Here’s a link to their policies
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Spirit? Get ready to Hang Ten! You can bring your surfboard, snowboards, wakeboards, boogie boards, body boards, and kiteboards) as checked baggage on your next trip.
Here’s a link to their policy
Sun Country Airlines
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying Sun Country? Here’s what Sun Country says about surfboards. As most surfboards are longer than five feet, it doesn’t appear Sun Country will accept longer surfboards.
Special sporting equipment as oversized bags
The following sporting equipment will not be considered checked bags and will incur additional fees: Sun Country does not provide bags or boxes for these items. For further information, call Sun Country Reservations at 651-905-2737.
Surfboard, Wakeboard & Kiteboards — The maximum length is five feet.
Can you bring a surfboard on a plane when flying United? United has some good information on traveling with surfboards, here’s a link to their policies
As long as they are packed in the proper board bags and don’t weigh more than 99.9 pounds (45.3 kilograms), United will accept surfboards, wakeboards, and paddleboards as special items. These items are subject to standard service charges for oversized and overweight bags. Fees for first, second and excess checked bags may apply..
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