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Baggage Fee question for kids Skis on United

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

We are 2 adults and 4 children travelling to Whistler on United Airlines...Trying to figure out the best way to pack our skis to minimize the baggage fees.  My 13 yo has adult skis so there is no question there.  Younger kids skis don't weigh nearly as much...can I toss a bunch of them in a ski bag an check it in with one boot bag as one piece or should I just pack them all of them in one checked bag (do weight limits apply to the bag or bag +boot) and what are those weight limits?

Thanks!!!

post #2 of 18

Do youself a favor and DO NOT check the boot bag in! at least not with the boots in it...

post #3 of 18

The weight limits are ski bag plus boot bag.  If both adults are taking skis, I would just through one pair of kid skis in with each pair of adult skis, making 3 bags.  I have never had them look to see if there are 1 or  2 pairs of skis in a bag.

post #4 of 18

Check out Their website:

Quote:

 

 
 
 
Allowance/requirements
1 ski bag, containing 1 pair of skis and poles, plus 1 boot bag, containing boots and bindings only, are allowed in place of one checked bag.

If more than one set of ski equipment is checked, each additional set of equipment (as outlined above) will be counted as one special item, and the associated fee(s) will apply.

 

 
Maximum size/weight
If combined weight of ski bag and boot bag exceed 50 pounds (23 kg), an
overweight fee applies.
 
 
 
 

It sounds like you might be in trouble packing as you suggested.

The wording from United is very different than the wording from Delta.

I never fly United so I don't know how strict they are.

I always fly Delta.
 

post #5 of 18

I work for a regional carrier for United, and while I don't pay attention to if they do or do not check for 1 or 2 pairs of skis in each bag, I can confidently say the gate agents and folks at the check-in counter probably don't have time to do so.  They barely have enough time to do their required tasks, and to be honest, most of them wouldn't care.  As long as it's not over 50 lbs, which would then qualify for a heavy bag which you would have to pay for.

post #6 of 18

^^^

Ditto, I fly united often and they never check contents, just weight. 

post #7 of 18

TSA on the other hand...will open your bag.  Luckily they don't care if it's one pair or two.

post #8 of 18

I've also never had a checkin agent actually open the ski bag (only 3 such flights, though.)  They're really just concerned about the weight and size.

 

One counter agent was very concerned that I wanted to carry on my boots, like TSA was going to confiscate them or something.  Yeah, I dunno either.  The only issue I've run into is that they're really inconsistent on whether they want the boots in one of those plastic bins when they go through the x-ray machine.

post #9 of 18

I dont think they care if there are one or two pairs of skis in the bag. 50lbs togather with the boots is what they're looking at. As for carrying the boots on as carry-on......if its a stright thru flight....with no transfers.... than you should be okay checking them in with the skis. No chance of getting lost there. Its when you have transfers at other airports  that bags get lost. If there are transfers, than I'd carry them on. It's up to you.

post #10 of 18

I love United.  I fly them a lot.  But I'm really concerned that they want me to pack my bindings in my boot bag.  Seems a lot of folks are probably in violation of this policy.  From now on I'm going to bring my #3 Pozidriv and RooClear, too.

post #11 of 18

 

Just my add:

 

Flew back on southwest from denver last sunday and my dad asked the agent if it was no big deal to have a couple extra things in the boot bag like googles and was told if there was anything other than boots; it would be counted as a 3rd bag and he would be charged. so, he had to carry it on.

 

now, its my opinion that he got the wrong agent at the wrong time and if if said nothing; she woould have checked the bag no questions asked; but just fair warning that southwest at denver can pull that if they wish.

 

i still cannot believe no company has figured out how to put skis and boots together in 1 bag yet enough to make a ski bag with a slight hump. i would think you could sell that in order to alleviate people's boot bag problems and make the 2 bag limit.

post #12 of 18

I've flown SW 4 times in the last couple years with tons of stuff crammed into my double ski bag (sometimes 2 pair of skis, too. And it's really obvious there are helmets in the ends). Anyway, no one's ever said anything. I agree asking is probably not the right way to get your stuff through.

 

 

Quote:
  But I'm really concerned that they want me to pack my bindings in my boot bag.  

 No kidding! What are they thinking?

post #13 of 18

I don't fly as much as some people do but, I fly more times a year then most do in a life time.( over 70 flights this year and I hate United LOL )

If you get a ticket agent that is trying to do their job to exacting standards they will be a pain. Try to figure out when standing at the ticket counter how to get around the packing dilemma.

Most time people don't give you a hard time but sometimes they do ( I go to the priority line at the airport so don't get the problems I use to.)

As far as a straight flight and baggage ...yes most of the time your luggage makes it also , but again not always I have had my luggage delayed several times ( including last years gathering). The airlines have contracts with UPS and FEDEX and such if they are over wt limit because of parcels guess what.... someone is getting the luggage later. I carry my boots on the plane that's all I worry about unless I'm doing some work also and I carry my LT.

I know it might cost a bit more to do it all above board and 99% of the time you don't have to but...... at the airport getting tickets is not the time to figure out how you are going to get all your stuff on Vacation with you just cause you tried to save a few bucks.

Maybe you want to look at pre shipping the kids equipment ahead of you.

post #14 of 18



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skicougar View Post

 

i still cannot believe no company has figured out how to put skis and boots together in 1 bag yet enough to make a ski bag with a slight hump. i would think you could sell that in order to alleviate people's boot bag problems and make the 2 bag limit.


I would never, never, never, check my boots. Carry on only.

I usually ship my skis, clothes, helmet and such, by FedEx.
 

post #15 of 18

 

Quote:
As for carrying the boots on as carry-on......if its a stright thru flight....with no transfers.... than you should be okay checking them in with the skis. No chance of getting lost there.

 

Sorry, but that's wishful thinking.  SWISS left my ski bag behind on a flight from Boston to Geneva a couple years ago.  Apparently they forgot to load a whole cart full of baggage -- a ton of people on the flight were missing bags.

 

If there's anything you can't live without/replace at your destination, carry it with you.  I don't know about you, but I can't replace my boots on short notice with something remotely comparable.

post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonrpen View Post



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skicougar View Post

 

i still cannot believe no company has figured out how to put skis and boots together in 1 bag yet enough to make a ski bag with a slight hump. i would think you could sell that in order to alleviate people's boot bag problems and make the 2 bag limit.


I would never, never, never, check my boots. Carry on only.

I usually ship my skis, clothes, helmet and such, by FedEx.
 


Maybe he was thinking about a bag for both that you can carry on?? "Excuse me sir, why are you carrying the saws all??"" Oh its to cut out the bulk head divides so my carry on fits in the overhead"
 

post #17 of 18

Flew United with 3 other adults and 7 (yes, 7) kids to Steamboat out of Boston last February.  All the kids had Transpacks and carried on their helmets, boots, and electronic flight survival gear.

 

Little kid skis were stuffed in "normal" checked bags.  We doubled up adult and junior skis in single ski bags.  AND - just in case we got "that agent" - we also stuff an extra ski bag in each doubled up bag.  (cus the price of an additional checked bag is MUCH cheaper than paying for an overweight bag).

 

When we pulled up to the terminal, we, fortunately, had curb side check in with porters.  We flashed some cash, they didn't even weigh the bags, and ended up "only" charging us for the first 4 checked bags.  (They took pity on the circus of kids outnumbering parents.)

 

SO

 

1)  Keep it under 50lbs.  This is an immediate red flag.  Weigh them at home before you leave.

2)  Get boot bags and carry on the boots and helmets.

3)  Tip big and curb side check in.  They are less likely to freak out over snow pants in the bag than at the ticket counter.  You never know when you're going to get the agent who was dumped last night and is taking it out on the world.  Avoid that by hitting up the curb side check in guys.

post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 

Just got back from Whistler...great snow great skiing and no hassels with baggage...kept the weight under 50lbs and they didn't care if more than one pair of skis where in the bag...

Thanks for all of the advice...

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