So, you’ve already invested in your snowboard boots and a high-performing board, and you’ve completed your on-mountain set-up with your favorite pieces of snowboarding clothing and gear. Ready to head out West! Right?
If your preferred snow-capped mountain is hundreds of miles away, make sure you have prepared to safely get your gear from point A to point B? If you have invested in loads of gear you love, you will want to travel with it – rentals won’t feel the same – and all your prized possessions need to get there in one piece.
The last thing you want is to arrive at your destination with an expensive broken binding or squished goggles. For the more serious or frequent snowboarders, choosing a snowboard bag for air travel is an important part of the set-up. The way baggage is handled throughout air travel is by no means delicately, and even long car trips where cars are packed to the brim can cause damage to improperly packed snowboards and accessories.
Our experts have gathered some must have features to help you choose the best snowboard bag for your next trip! So, you can travel with confidence.
The Elements of a Quality Snowboard Bag
A solid snowboard bag should obviously be durable, lightweight, and should offer padding and protection for your snowboarding gear. There are a ton of options available, and while many essentially accomplish the same thing, not all are created equal. Additional padding, wheels, multiple pockets for storing small items, strap options, overall space, and more, are all features to consider when you are deciding how much to spend.
Consider Your Budget
When choosing your snowboard bag, identify early on what you feel comfortable spending, this will help you determine what features you can achieve in your price range. At nearly any budget you can find something suitable for air travel if you pack your snowboard gear methodically.
Frequency of Use
Consider how often you plan on using your snowboard bag. If you are packing for several car outings and maybe one trip by air travel, you will not necessarily need the most durable bag. For those of you who would like to use your bag to travel by air several times a season, with perhaps a road trip or two, you’ll want to invest in a more durable option to last you longer and better protect your gear.
Types of Snowboard Bags
The different types of snowboard bags vary from backpacks, shoulder bags, wheeled versions, lightly and heavily padded options, and more!
The backpack is ideal mainly for those often moving from point A to point B, and for those who prefer to carry their gear in a less cumbersome way, without sacrificing their hands to wheel or carry. This is an airport-friendly option, as it can rest on your back, freeing up your hands for handling tickets and other luggage. When choosing a backpack option consider how padded you would like the straps to be, so you will be able to handle the weight comfortably, especially for long airport treks and security lines.
For the shoulder bag, it slings easily over your shoulder and is a simple and standard option, often the cheapest. This is a great option for the snowboarder who does not intent to carry their bag too far and is looking primarily for overall function.
When it come to snowboard bags with wheels, for many it is worth the price. Wheeling your heavy gear through the airport gates and lines, and especially for those who travel by train, often will not go back to the other options after getting this style.
Padded options are ideal for air travel and times when your gear may be tossed around with others. If you are looking for a bag purely for organization, storage, and only travel on a rare occasion, an unpadded option – a sleeve – will work.
Other Snowboard Bag Features
If you choose to lock up your bag when you travel, make sure you secure your baggage with a TSA-Approved Lock, as they use a specialized tool when opening them.
Compartments should also be considered when opting to use a snowboard bag for air travel. This will be perfect for all your clothes, extra socks, beanies, and gloves, and smaller accessories, and some even offer spots that are specific for boots.
You may also want to consider internal straps, having these will help prevent your gear from shifting too much during air travel.
Lastly, quality zippers help add convenience and increase the durability and longevity of your investment.
The Pack Up
Whether you’ve been conquering the mountains for years or you are completely new to snowboarding, make sure you have everything you need with you on your next trip – and that you feel confident it will get there in one piece! We hope this guide helps you out in choosing the right bag for your next air travel snowboarding trip, and we hope this helps maximize your overall snowboarding experience!