Flying with a SUP-board
Planning a trip and want to bring your paddle board with you? You might be wondering, can you take an inflatable paddle board on an airplane?
Can You Take an Inflatable Paddle Board on an Airplane?
The answer is yes, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Here’s what you need to know about traveling with an inflatable paddle board.
Size and Weight Limits for Inflatable Paddle Boards
The first thing to consider when traveling with an inflatable paddle board is size and weight limits for checked and carry-on baggage. Most airlines have similar restrictions, but it’s always best to check with your specific airline before packing your paddle board.
Carry-on Baggage: Typically, the maximum dimensions for carry-on baggage are 45 inches (22 cm x 14 cm x 9 cm), which would exclude most inflatable paddle boards. However, some airlines might make an exception for sporting equipment.
For example, Southwest Airlines allows passengers to bring one “carry-on and one personal item” such as a purse or laptop bag. So, if your inflatable paddle board meets the 45-inch dimensions and can be packed in a travel bag that also fits under the seat in front of you, you should be able to bring it on the plane as a carry-on item.
Checked Baggage: If you’re planning on checking your inflatable paddle board, most airlines have a maximum weight limit of 50 pounds (23 kg) for checked baggage. Again, it’s always best to check with your airline beforehand to avoid any surprises at the airport.
Additionally, make sure your paddle board is securely packed in a travel bag designed for sporting equipment. This will help protect your paddle board from being damaged during transport.
Packing Your Inflatable Paddle Board for Travel
Now that you know the size and weight restrictions for bringing an inflatable paddle board on a plane, it’s time to start packing! Here are a few tips for packing your SUP so it arrives at your destination safe and sound:
- Use a travel bag designed specifically for SUPs. These bags usually have multiple handles and wheels so they’re easy to transport through the airport.
- If possible, deflate your SUP and roll it up tightly before packing it in the travel bag. This will save space and prevent air bubbles from forming inside the SUP during transport.
- Pack any loose items such as paddles or life jackets in the travel bag so they don’t get lost en route.
- Make sure all valves are closed tightly and secure so not damaged in transport.
Here are a few tips on how to make flying with your paddle board as easy and stress-free as possible.
Get A Hard Case For Your Paddle Board – Make sure to invest in a hard case for your paddle board. This will ensure that your board is well-protected while you are traveling. Hard cases also tend to be much easier to maneuver through airports than soft cases.
Make Sure Your Board Is Under The Weight Limit – Most airlines have a weight limit for baggage, and your paddle board will likely fall under this category. However, it is always best to check with your specific airline to make sure. If your board is too heavy, you may have to pay an overweight fee.
Register Your Paddle Board As Special Baggage – When you check in for your flight, be sure to register your paddle board as special baggage. This way, the airline will know to take extra care of it. You may also want to consider getting insurance for your paddle board, just in case something happens to it while it is in transit.
Bring A Pump And Deflate Your Paddle Board – This will make traveling with your paddle board much easier, as a deflated board will take up less space than an inflated one. Just be sure to bring a pump so that you can inflate your board when you reach your destination!
Arrive Early To The Airport – Checking in and flying with a standup paddle board can be time-consuming, so make sure to arrive at the airport early. This way, you won’t have to worry about missing your flight or rushing through security.
Inflatable paddle boards are a great way to enjoy SUPing whether you’re at home or on vacation. And lucky for you, these types of Boards are easy to travel with thanks to their compact size when deflated and rolled up tightly.
Just remember to pay attention to size and weight restrictions when packing your Board into a carry-on or checked baggage, and use a secure travel bag designed specifically for SUPs to help prevent damage during transport. Bon voyage!
Flying with a stand up paddleboard doesn’t have to be difficult! Just follow these simple tips and you’ll be on your way in no time at all. Safe travels!
About the author: Chris loves the outdoors and has developed a love of gadgets and inflatable toys, from kayaking and paddle boarding to relaxing in his hot tub at home. The founder of WhichInflatable and has been the editor for 7 years.