Skis and ski poles are not allowed as airplane carry-ons, but the Transportation Security Administration does allow them as checked luggage items. The tips and bindings have the greatest danger of damage, and improperly packed skis can also become warped during handling and travel. Packing the skis properly helps ensure they arrive safely and undamaged at your destination. Your ski bag will also count as part of your baggage allowance with the airline, so it's important to pack as compactly as possible to avoid additional fees.

Step 1.

Confirm checked baggage fees with your airline before traveling. Additional bags and those over a certain weight require higher fees for air travel. The airline may also have specific rules for packing skis on a flight.

Step 2.

Cover the tips of your ski poles with tip covers. Alternatively, wrap a length of foam pipe insulation around the tips and hold it in place with a rubber band. This prevents the poles from tearing the ski bag or injuring a baggage inspector.

Step 3.

Pack the skis and poles inside a padded ski duffel bag. Do not travel with the skis outside of a bag because they can become caught in the baggage conveyor systems used in most airports.

Step 4.

Place folded or rolled clothing items in the bag with the skis. The clothing provides additional padding and allows you to carry fewer bags on your trip, which helps minimize airline baggage fees.

Step 5.

Include a luggage tag with your contact information on the outside and on the inside of the bag. If the outer tag becomes lost, the tag on the inside can help reunite you with your skis at your destination.

Things You Will Need
  • Tip cover or foam pipe insulation

  • Ski duffel

  • Luggage tags


Some ski resorts offer a checked baggage credit on your resort stay. Check with your resort before flying.

Shipping your skis to your resort via a shipping company or renting skis upon arrival is sometimes less expensive than paying airline baggage fees.