Having a great snowboard bag would make your trip a lot easier, but having a great snowboard bag suitable for air travel would make your trip super!
It is always a blessing if you are living somewhere close to the mountain but it’s also true that most of us need to fly to a ski resort for snowboarding. Therefore, having a snowboard bag that’s good for air travel would help you a lot.
In this article, we are going to talk about the essential features of a good snowboard bag for air travel and for sure, we will recommend some great choices for you too.
Here’s a summary of what we’ve picked for you:
- Burton Wheelie Gig Snowboard Bag – a great quality snowboard bag with wheels, pads, loads of pockets, and with different ways to carry.
- Burton Gig Bag – a lightweight snowboarding bag with no wheels but great protection and pockets.
- Burton Board Sack – a great price-point and durable snowboard bag with no wheels.
What Makes a Great Snowboard Bag for Air Travel?
Luggage allowance is what makes us most annoyed when it comes to snowboarding trip by air. Your snowboard, boots, bindings, jackets, pants, protection gears, helmet, goggles… bang! 70% of your allowance is gone. Imagine you only have 20 KG allowance and your gears’ weight is like 18 KG, plus a snowboard bag weights like 4KG. Penalty fees are what you would be looking at. Therefore, it is a good idea for you to get a snowboard bag that’s as light as possible!
You snowboard bag should be strong and durable so it won’t damage easily. Especially for air travel, some of my friends work in different airlines and they all told me that it is quite common for them to flow your luggage like a baseball. Honestly, I am not so sure if this is the case for snowboard bags, but I am quite sure they won’t be handling bag with the same manner as you. So a durable one is very important.
Most of the snowboard bags produced by big brand names are normally made with very durable materials, however, do make sure the zips are of good quality too. Once I got a great priced snowboard bags with no brands, the zipper broke in two days then I have to purchase one at the ski resort, very nice and durable just the price was double than what I could get from the online shop. So yes, durable fabric and very very durable zips.
Always get a snowboard bags with pads to provide better protection to your snowboard, again your bags will be flowing around in the airport!
With Wheels vs No Wheels
So this comes to the question about if you want to bring only a snowboard bag for your trips. I have both, and depending on my trip I will pick the one fits my travel. Here is a comparison between snowboard bags with wheels and no wheels.
Snowboard bag with wheels
- More expensive
- Heavier – Consumes more of your luggage allowance
- Normally with larger volume, so you will have only one check-in luggage most of the time
- Less easy to walk around – it’s heavier and bigger, plus the snowboard bag is normally longer than the no-wheel one, your hands will get very tired after walking with it for some time
- You will not be able to take another 4 wheels suitcase so it’s harder for you to improve it, I used to take a small 4 wheels hand carry and just put my wheels bag above it and pull both of them together, it gets better but still, I got really tired after 10 mins
- Less flexible, most designs come with only 2 wheels so you can only pull it behind you, for those with 4 wheels, you are still kind of restricted since you can hardly pull your wheels snowboards since it’s too long, thin and soft
- Very likely you would have more division than those with no wheels and hence it’s easier for you to divide your belongings into different sections (e.g. dry clothes, wet jackets…)
- Provides better protection for your content because most wheels bag comes with a hard base and pads
Snowboard bag with no wheels
- Lighter – Consumes less of your luggage allowance
- Smaller so you may need to have another check in suitcase or bag
- Easier to walk around, but you will have to carry it all by yourself, hence you will be super tired if you have to walk with this snowboard for over 10 minutes.
- Combining with a 4 wheels suitcase would make it a lot easier for you to move around, just put the snowboard bags on top of your suitcase, and you just need to push the suitcase and make sure the snowboard bags is attached firmly to your suitcase would do
- More flexible, you can carry it like a backpack, or just with different shoulders, different hands, different positions to easier your walk with snowboard
- It’s smaller and hence would have less division so you need to separate your items by yourself, or I usually wrap my board with my clothes to provide extra care
- Provides less protection for your content so you need to wrap your gears better and make sure they are protected by yourself.
It is always a good idea for you to get a colorful snowboard bag for your air travel because it is easier to recognize and there’s less chance to get stolen. I got a rainbow color one once, and I was always the first person locating my snowboard bag among other black snowboard bags.
It is always preferable to have a wrapping strap in your snowboard bags, just like your suitcase so your boards would not be moving around when the airport porters are transferring your bags.
Best Snowboard Bags for Air Travel: Our Recommendations
A 20 x 13 x 8 inches snowboard bag weighted only 4 pounds (less than 2 KG), very light but still big enough for you to put your board, bindings, boots, helmet, goggles, jackets and pants in it. The main compartment is fully zip accessible and with multiple storages so it’s a very convenient bag. It has internal webbing straps to keep your board in place, and pads so to provide better protection of your gears. It’s also very durable, most burton bags are made with very durable fabrics so you can use them for many years. There are loads of color options for you to choose too. What is not that nice about this product is Burton bags are usually more expensive than other brands.
This is a padded snowboard bag with a lot of pockets and protection. It has removable shoulder carry so you can carry it in multiple ways. There is a strap on the bottom for your skateboard so you can wheel by yourself. It’s cheaper than the one with wheels. It’s very spacious, you can fit into a lot of gears and clothes. And it comes with many color options too. What is not that nice is again, it’s usually slightly more expensive than other options.
A cheaper version burton bag with fewer pads protection, great price items in terms of Burton. It’s lightweight and simple, with nice color options. This is a very spacious bag with enough room to fit loads of gears, and pretty durable! What is not that nice about it is there are fewer pockets and less protection due to the minimum amount of pads.
Always check the luggage weight allowance, if you don’t have much allowance, go for the lighter options like those with no wheels.
Check for how many pieces of luggage you are allowed to check in – if you are allowed to check in just 1 bag, better pick the one with larger volume.
How will you get to the ski resort upon after you landed? If you are going to drive with some friends, it’s a good idea for you to get a no-wheels snowboard bag because it’s soft and if you guys are having too many luggage, you can just take out the content inside your snowboard bag and fill up the gaps between all the luggage and the car. I tried this method all the time, if you are going a great “filling up the gap job”, it is very likely you can bring items with a mass over a 29-inch big luggage easily.
If you are getting a snowboard bag with no wheels, it’s better you get a snowboard sleeve to wrap your snowboard well first then place it into your bag for offering more protection.
Check where are you going and how can you access the hotels when you get off the car or bus. If it’s somewhere you need to walk for over five minutes but on a flat road with not too much ice and snow, a 4-wheel suitcase can access, probably a snowboard bag with no wheels plus a 4-wheel hard case suitcase is the best combination because it saves much of your energy.
Additional Care Tips:
- Always try your bags after you used it.
- Before putting into storage, make sure your snowboard bag and the inside gears are all dry.
- Wax the zipper a bit before putting it into storage.
- Change the content position, for example, place your helmet into different positions per flight so to spread out the weight and easier the tension caused to the fabric.
Alright, so that’s all I can think of until now regarding picking the best snowboard bags for air travel. Just make sure you check your bags every time before flying out! Ya… I just miss the snowboard packing and can’t wait for the mountain! Cheers!