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Article: How To Protect Your Surfboard When Travelling

How To Protect Your Surfboard When Travelling

How To Protect Your Surfboard When Travelling

As a surfer, there's nothing quite like packing up your board and hitting the road for a surf trip. Whether it's a quick weekend getaway or an extended adventure, the excitement of exploring new waves is hard to beat. However, with the thrill of travel comes the risk of surfboard damage. From rough handling during air travel to shifting cargo during a road trip, there are many factors that can compromise the safety of your board. In this blog, we'll take a look at some effective ways to protect your surfboard while traveling, whether you're flying or hitting the open road.

Step # 1 : Choosing The Right Surfboard Bag

The first step in protecting your surfboard when traveling is to look for a bag that is specifically designed for surfboards and provides ample padding and protection. A good surfboard bag should have a sturdy zipper, durable material, and reinforced corners to prevent damage.There are many different types of surfboard bags, the type of specific bag you need depends on the type of travel you plan on doing. Some different types of board bags can be found HERE.

Step # 2 : Protect your board before putting it into your board bag

Wrap Your Board with padding

Before packing your surfboard for international travel , it is important to take certain precautions to ensure that your board arrives at its destination undamaged. One of the most effective ways to protect your board during transit is to wrap it in foam. This provides an extra layer of cushioning that helps prevent dings and scratches that can occur during transportation. It is important to pay special attention to the nose and tail of the board, as these are the most vulnerable areas. By wrapping your surfboard properly, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your board is well-protected during transit.

Step # 3 : Secure And Store Your Fins

One of the most common problems faced by surfers who travel with their surfboards is damage caused to fins due to loose or broken fins. This can be prevented by removing the fins and packing them separately in a surfboard fin case. However, if it is not possible to remove the fins, it is important to make sure that they are securely attached to the board and protected with foam. Damaged fins can affect the performance of the surfboard and can be costly to repair, so it is important to take the necessary precautions to protect them during travel.

Step # 4 : Label Your Bag

When it comes to traveling with a surfboard, ensuring that your beloved gear arrives at its intended destination can be a stressful experience. To avoid any mishaps, it's important to prepare your surfboard for travel by properly labeling your 8 ft surfboard bag with your name, contact information, and destination address. Doing so will make it easier for airline or shipping personnel to locate your bag in case it gets lost or delayed during transit.

Step # 5 : Handle Your Board with Care

When traveling with your surfboard, be sure to handle it with care. Avoid dragging or dropping it, and use a luggage cart or trolley to transport it through the airport or to your destination. If you're traveling by car, secure your board with straps or bungee cords to prevent it from shifting during transport.

Step # 6 : Inspect Your Board Upon Arrival

When you arrive at your destination, inspect your surfboard for any damage. Look for dings, scratches, or pressure marks that may have occurred during transit. If you notice any damage, take photos and contact your airline or shipping company immediately to file a claim. It is usually easier to do this at home, although if you do it at the airport, you benefit from showing an actual person the damage. 

Step # 7 : Store Your Board Properly

Once you've arrived at your destination, it's important to store your surfboard properly to prevent damage. Keep it in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. If you're traveling for an extended period of time, consider investing in a storage rack or stand to keep your board off the ground and protected.

Additional tips when it comes to traveling with your surfboard: 

1. Pack Your Board Properly

When packing your surfboard, make sure it is centered in the bag and surrounded by ample padding. Use towels or clothing to fill any gaps and prevent the board from shifting during transit. Avoid stacking other items on top of your board, as this can cause pressure damage. If possible, get a board bag with internal pockets so that your belongings do not fall to one side of the bag.

2. Look for Direct Flights

It might sound weird, but when traveling internationally with a surfboard cover, you should consider booking a non-stop ticket with an airline that has good surfboard baggage fees. (find surfboard baggage fees here). This is not always possible, of course, but if it is, you limit the amount of times your bag is handled.

Moreover, handling fewer layovers not only minimizes the risk of your surfboard getting damaged but also reduces the stress of dealing with multiple airline policies and potential extra fees at each stop. It's a smoother experience that lets you focus more on the excitement of your surfing adventure rather than the logistics of getting your equipment safely to your destination. Always double-check the airline's policy on surfboards as baggage ahead of your trip to avoid any surprises.

3. General Tips

  • Take photos of your surfboard in good condition before traveling to have evidence for potential damage claims.
  • Research airline surfboard policies for baggage fees and size restrictions, as they vary from one carrier to another.
  • Be aware of the weight and size of your surfboard, and make sure it's properly packed to prevent damage during transportation.
  • Communicate clearly with the airline regarding your surfboard transportation, including its size, weight, and any special handling instructions.
  • Consider investing in a quality surfboard canvas bag that offers ample padding and protection during travel.
  • Avoid leaving any valuables inside the surfboard cover, as airlines are not responsible for lost or stolen items.
  • If possible, book a direct flight to minimize the risk of your surfboard being mishandled during layovers or transfers.
  • Always double-check your surfboard for any damage upon arrival and report any issues to the airline immediately.

Tips to protect your surfboard when traveling on road trips:

Use a Board Sock

A board sock is a handy accessory for surfers who want to keep their surfboards safe and clean while in transit. It is a lightweight cover that slips over the board and provides an extra layer of protection from scratches, dings, and dust. Board socks are also useful in preventing wax from getting on other items in your bag or car. They are available in various sizes and materials, such as cotton, polyester, and stretchy knit fabrics. Choosing the right board sock that fits your board snugly and offers adequate protection can help extend the life of your surfboard and make your travels worry-free.


In conclusion, protecting your surfboard when traveling is essential to ensure that it arrives at its destination in one piece. By following the steps outlined in our guide, you can minimize the risk of damage and keep your surfboard in great shape. If you're in the market for a new 7' surfboard bag, consider choosing FARO for a high-quality, sustainable option. Our commitment to quality and sustainability is evident in their selection of surfboard bags, which are designed to provide ample protection during transport. Take action today and travel with confidence, knowing that your surfboard is protected with FARO.