A Guide To Airline Board Bag Fees for Surfers


Catching A Wave? Airlines’ Surfboard Fees Could Catch You By Surprise

Swimsuit? Check. Sunscreen? Check. Cool shades? Check. You’re done packing for your trip to one of the best surfing destinations on the planet, and now it’s time to check-in at the airport with your surfboard in tow. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself facing some hefty checked bag fees, even if you’re using an airline-branded credit card that offers free checked baggage. Here are six surfboards policies by the airline.

1. Alaska Airlines

Offering flights to Hawaii and other West Coast destinations known for great waves, Alaska Airlines lets you take a surfboard or paddleboard case with up to two boards inside for the same price as a normal piece of luggage ($30 for the first checked item). If you have the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card, you can apply your free checked baggage perk to your surfboard.

2. American Airlines

Talk about smooth sailing: Travelers with American Airlines pay only standard checked bag fees for surfboards weighing less than 50 pounds ($30 if the surfboard is your only checked item). Cram two surfboards into one bag and you’ll pay just one checked bag fee to transport both boards.

3. Delta Airlines

If you’re flying between Honolulu and Maui, Delta charges only $20 but rates go up significantly if you’re flying anywhere else. It will cost you at least $150 to fly with your surfboards on Delta and other fees may apply if your bag is over 70 pounds. Boards are limited to 115 inches in length.

4. Jet Blue

You can check one surfboard for $100 each way on JetBlue but the board can’t weigh more than 100 lbs. Good to know: Surfboards aren’t accepted when flying to or from Bermuda, Peru, Port of Spain, Haiti, Santiago, and Santo Domingo.

5. Southwest Airlines

When bringing your surfboard along, Southwest isn’t a bad direction to go. You can fly with your board anywhere for only $75 each way. They’ve simplified the surfboard policy, with no stipulations about board length or weight.

6. Spirit Airlines

You’ll pay $100 to check a surfboard with Spirit but you can save yourself some cash by putting two surfboards in one bag: Spirit doesn’t impose weight and size charges when it comes to checking surfboards.


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Sandra Murphy

Holds a master's degree in professional writing and has more than 15 years of experience writing for national and international entities.

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