Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Article: How to Transport a Surfboard Without a Roof Rack

How to Transport a Surfboard Without a Roof Rack

How to Transport a Surfboard Without a Roof Rack

Transporting a surfboard safely and efficiently is a crucial part of any surfing adventure. If you don't have a roof rack, don't worry! There are other ways to transport your surfboard, including using soft racks. In this blog, we'll take you through the step-by-step process of how to transport a surfboard without a rack.

1. Car Options (depending on surfboard length)

When it comes to transporting surfboards in a car, there are a few options depending on the length of the board. For shorter surfboards, it's possible to transport them inside the car. Here are some options:

  • Back seats

If you have a small surfboard, you can transport it inside the car by placing it in the back seat. You can also fold down your seats to allow the bag to fit, and a really handy trick is to fully extend your front seat, sliding your surfboard in from the trunk. This gives you a lot of extra room for more than one surfboard. 

One very important tip here is to make sure you close your trunk lightly!!! This will stop you from potentially shattering your windshield or damaging your surfboard. 

  • Trunk

Another option for smaller surfboards is to transport them in the trunk. Just make sure to place a towel or blanket down to protect the interior of your car. This is where canvas surfboard bags can come in handy.

2. Soft Racks

If you can't install a hard roof rack, a soft roof rack is a good alternative. It's a temporary fixture that can be strapped onto the roof of your car and provides a secure base for your surfboard.

3. Tie Down Straps Only

If you do not want to invest in a soft roof rack, you can just place your board in a surfboard case and use tie-downs to secure the board. The best thing to do in this scenario is to open all of your doors and apply two die town straps - one towards the front of the board and one towards the back. Thread the tie-down straps through the doors and tighten them.

It is important if you are using this method to use a canvas board bag or some other type of board bag to protect your surfboard and car. Whether you choose to transport your surfboard inside the car or on the roof, it's important to make sure that it's secure and won't move around while you're driving. Always use appropriate straps or bungee cords and double-check that everything is secure before hitting the road.

Another helpful tip here is to use towels or pool noodles to shield your board from the top of your car.

 4. Trailer Hitch Rack

Another method for transporting surfboards when a roof rack isn't available is utilizing a trailer hitch rack. This innovative solution attaches to your vehicle's trailer hitch, providing a stable and secure platform for your boards. It effectively positions the surfboard behind the vehicle, reducing aerodynamic drag and safeguarding against damage. The setup is straightforward, making it an appealing option for surf enthusiasts. Moreover, its versatility allows for carrying multiple boards, which is ideal for group outings. 

5. Tow-Behind Trailer

Another method to transport a surfboard without a roof rack is with a tow-behind trailer. This option is ideal if you're hauling multiple surfboards or need space for additional bulky gear alongside your board.

Rental trailers, both enclosed and open varieties, are readily available at many locations. Alternatively, if you frequently transport surfboards, investing in your own trailer might be worthwhile.

The key is selecting a trailer with the appropriate size and weight capacity for your surfboard(s) and any additional cargo. Securing the boards to the trailer is similar to securing them on your car - use sturdy tie-down straps to ensure a firm and safe hold throughout your journey.

Remember, towing a trailer affects your vehicle's handling and braking distance. When driving with a trailer, it's important to follow all traffic rules and drive carefully to keep the journey safe and smooth.

Choose a Suitable Vehicle

When planning to transport a surfboard without a rack, the first thing you need to do is choose a suitable vehicle. It's ideal to pick a vehicle that can accommodate the size of the surfboard, such as a van or an SUV with foldable seats, as they provide ample space to fit the board inside. Additionally, you should ensure there's enough space to fit the surfboard inside the vehicle without obstructing the driver's or passengers' comfort. It's important to keep the surfboard in a position that won't interfere with the driver's view, as it may cause an accident. 

Importance of Surfboard Bags

While transporting a surfboard without a rack, it's important to use a surfboard bag 8ft or 9ft to protect the board from any potential damage. A surfboard canvas bag provides extra cushioning and protection to the board during transportation. It also helps to keep the board clean and free from dirt and debris. If you don't have a surfboard canvas bag, you can use an old bed sheet or blanket to wrap the board and provide extra protection.


In conclusion, transporting a surfboard without a rack can be a bit tricky, but it's definitely possible. By following the tips outlined in this guide, you can safely transport your board to your destination, whether you're traveling by car, bike, or on foot. And if you're looking for high-quality 7' surfboard bags to protect your board during transport, be sure to check out FARO. Our bags are built to last, with a focus on quality, sustainability, transparency, exploration, and timeless design. Visit FARO today and start exploring the world with confidence, knowing that your board is safe and secure.