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Safest way to pack skis with an ariline? - Page 2

post #31 of 36
Bec,

No, but I'm sure it was a hell of a sight just to see the skis while they were moving. They were dragged enough to shave away one corner of one ski tip, and one corner of one ski tail (two pairs of skis, tip to tail). The bag was, obviously, obliterated, and the ski that had the tail shaved, heated up enough to turn the metal edges all sorts of pretty colors, and the p-tex on the base boiled. I have the feeling they caught on fire briefly. It looked like they had held them up to the back of a jet engine and tried to roast marshmellows on them. That end of the bag got torn to shreads, but did not show signs of being burned.

Another thing that I learned from this experience, is that even high-end rentals are still pretty crappy, because they don't get maintained well. I went through 3 sets of rental skis that week, and still couldn't find a pair that skied well. Although I also rented another time, when I was at Whistler, and wanted some fatter, softer skis, and had them tune 'em for me when I picked them up. They skied well, but we had lots of soft snow, so the edges didn't matter quite as much.
post #32 of 36
I usually pack the skis in a Sportube & then FedEx them.
I can insure them with FedEx, the airlines say they're not responsible for any damage.
post #33 of 36
SporTube Co has some decent info on the new security regs posted on their web site:

SporTube Co.

"Earlier this month the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) determined that as of 12/31/02 all bags will now be screened and are subject to search should any piece of luggage be suspect of a potential danger. Therefore, they are recommending that luggage no longer be locked with a padlock. As of August 2003 all NEW Sportube Ski & Snowboard cases include a Wire Case Pin. Order NOW - $5.00 each includes Handling and Shipping. Place your order in the comments form at the bottom of the order form. Please specify quantities."

Another fix is to put a key on a carabiner and clip it to the padlock. That worked for me last year when I flew from IAD to Zurich with skis. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #34 of 36
The absolute safest way to pack skis is to load them personally onto your own plane.
post #35 of 36
Here's an interesting tale of woe.

I want to fly from DC to Zurich in late January. I want to fly one of the One World Carriers because of frequent flyer issues. I thought this would be a no brainer since Swiss Intl. offers non-stop flights from Dulles (IAD) to ZHR.

Wrong. Owing to the general decline in travel, Swiss recently cancelled that flight much to the dismay of the Swiss Ambassador here in DC (a friend at the embassy said everyone there is devastated). That means that I'll have to add at least 3-4 more hours to my travel evolution by flying through NYC if I want to go to ZHR. The alternative is to take an Austrian flight directly from IAD to Vienna and a Tyrolean shuttle to Innsbruck. That's a nice flight (especially the Tyrolean leg), and I have taken it quite a few times but I need to go with a One World carrier because of miles issues. Another option is a direct Lufthansa flight from IAD to Munich, but again, I need to go One World.

Ok, I found an American flight that goes from National (DCA) to JFK to ZHR. Great, that works I thought. I'm ready to book on the AA web site when I decide that I better call and ask about skis on the shuttle flight from DCA to JFK. I call American and ask if skis are permitted on an Embraer ER3 regional jet. AA says "no." I said "What, your going to have skiers from DC trying to take those shuttles in the winter to link up with flights to Europe and Canada." The manager said, "ok, I'll submit an inquiry through our computer system. Call back in 48 hours."

I did and AA decided it is ok after all for me or anyone else to take skis on an ER3. The moral of the story is that if you are a skier and have to take a small plane as part of your travel evolution, be sure to check with the airlines about skis. If you are taking a shuttle to Eagle airport, you obviously do not need to make the call b/c everyone going to Eagle in the Winter will be going with skis, but for commuter shuttles between places like DCA and JFK or Newark, CHECK....

[ October 10, 2003, 06:30 AM: Message edited by: West Virginia Skier ]
post #36 of 36
I use plastic bottles with the tops cut off. A 409 bottle fits over the tails of the skis, and a larger bottle fits over the tips, can't remember what brand of bottle. Just leave the bottles in your ski bag. Wrap something around the bindings, I use my ski pants and a towel. This protects them even when some idiot throws them on the cement. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
Melf
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