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Experiences/Tips Checking Snow Skis On UA?

Experiences/Tips Checking Snow Skis On UA?

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Old Jan 6, 14, 3:13 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2005
Programs: UA Gold 1MM
Posts: 139
Experiences/Tips Checking Snow Skis On UA?

Hopefully someone has recent experience with this.

I'm Premier Exec so seems like I get 3 x 70 Pound Bags. Never check bags for work travel but this seems pretty clear.

I'm taking a ski domestic US trip on a FF ticket and had planned on bringing my skis.

The Prem Exec phone line says $25 to check them even when pressed that I'm Prem Exec.

However the website says:

Anyone checked a ski bag recently and know what the real deal is?
I sure read this that they should just be one of the 3 "free" bags.

Thanks!

" United accepts one item of ski equipment per customer as checked baggage. Ski equipment must be securely encased in a suitable container. An item of ski equipment consists of:

Water skis
Snowboard
Up to two pairs of snow skis and associated equipment in one bag and one ski boot bag. (Note: If ski boot bag contains other items in addition to or in place of boots, it will be subject to the applicable checked baggage service charge or excess baggage service charge.)

If applicable, the first or second checked baggage service charge applies to ski equipment."
phil94028 is offline  
Old Jan 6, 14, 3:16 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: NYC / YUL
Programs: UA 1K, Marriott Plat, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Courtesy Card
Posts: 1,973
Originally Posted by phil94028 View Post
Hopefully someone has recent experience with this.

I'm Premier Exec so seems like I get 3 x 70 Pound Bags. Never check bags for work travel but this seems pretty clear.

I'm taking a ski domestic US trip on a FF ticket and had planned on bringing my skis.

The Prem Exec phone line says $25 to check them even when pressed that I'm Prem Exec.

However the website says:

Anyone checked a ski bag recently and know what the real deal is?
I sure read this that they should just be one of the 3 "free" bags.

Thanks!

" United accepts one item of ski equipment per customer as checked baggage. Ski equipment must be securely encased in a suitable container. An item of ski equipment consists of:

Water skis
Snowboard
Up to two pairs of snow skis and associated equipment in one bag and one ski boot bag. (Note: If ski boot bag contains other items in addition to or in place of boots, it will be subject to the applicable checked baggage service charge or excess baggage service charge.)

If applicable, the first or second checked baggage service charge applies to ski equipment."
I flew back home EWR-YUL in late December with my ski gear. I checked one pair of skis and one pair of boots in appropriate bags. I was charged $0. Returning back as *G on Air Canada, YUL-LGA, I was charged $0.
fjfv19 is offline  
Old Jan 6, 14, 10:35 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: ORD
Programs: UA 1K, Marriott Premier Platinum, Hertz PC
Posts: 33
I travel frequently with snowboard gear. Often, the counter agent looks around for someone to tell him/her what to do. I gladly pull up the website on my iPhone and voila, the policy says I should not be charged for the snowboard bag.

This has happened in several stations...me thinks there is not enough training on this subject.
villi is offline  
Old Jan 6, 14, 11:18 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: San Francisco
Programs: UA 1MM *Alliance Gold
Posts: 253
I've traveled dozens of times with my ski bag. It is checked in like any other bag, no extra charge. I stuff it with a lot of gear, never has been a problem
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Old Jan 7, 14, 5:53 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Originally Posted by villi View Post
I travel frequently with snowboard gear. Often, the counter agent looks around for someone to tell him/her what to do. I gladly pull up the website on my iPhone and voila, the policy says I should not be charged for the snowboard bag.
This has happened in several stations...me thinks there is not enough training on this subject.
There isn't enough training and I have done the same. In fact, I show up at the airport with that page pre-loaded on my phone. I don't mind as long as... (see below)

Originally Posted by rockrich View Post
I've traveled dozens of times with my ski bag. It is checked in like any other bag, no extra charge. I stuff it with a lot of gear, never has been a problem
...the agents don't know the website also says the bags cannot contain additional items. This is one of those situations where the agents not being trained on all the rules is helpful. I don't stuff the bags full, but you can jam quite a bit of accessories into the boot bag.
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Old Jan 7, 14, 7:09 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Programs: BA Gold, UA Nobody, Hilton Gold
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I've checked both snowboard and ski bags (Dakine Double Fall Line 175cm - so big) loads of times and always filled with ski clothes as padding. On my last LGA-DEN trip the ski bag weighed 52lbs and nobody batted an eyelid in either direction.

I've not tried taking advantage of the ski bag and boot bag counting as a combined single piece of luggage as my ski bag holds my boots.
alex_b is offline  
Old Jan 7, 14, 7:53 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Originally Posted by alex_b View Post
I've checked both snowboard and ski bags (Dakine Double Fall Line 175cm - so big) loads of times and always filled with ski clothes as padding.
This is always advisable as I've heard some horror stories from friends who also travel with skis. Protecting the bindings and tips is of utmost importance. Just this last trip, my poles of 8 years sadly did not survive because I didn't protect them well enough.
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Old Jan 7, 14, 8:03 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: IND
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Originally Posted by fjfv19 View Post
There isn't enough training and I have done the same. In fact, I show up at the airport with that page pre-loaded on my phone. I don't mind as long as... (see below)



...the agents don't know the website also says the bags cannot contain additional items. This is one of those situations where the agents not being trained on all the rules is helpful. I don't stuff the bags full, but you can jam quite a bit of accessories into the boot bag.
The regulations are a bit more nuanced than that. It's the ski boot bag that is not supposed to contain additional items. The ski bag is fine to contain additional items, as long as it's under 50 lbs.

I travel with a hard-sided Sportube double ski case and have never been questioned. (Boots go in a large rolling duffel.) I've not tested the 50 vs. 70 lb allowance as a 1K on the ski tube.


United accepts one item of ski equipment per customer as checked baggage. Ski equipment must be securely encased in a suitable container. An item of ski equipment consists of:
...
  • Up to two pairs of snow skis and associated equipment in one bag and one ski boot bag. (Note: If ski boot bag contains other items in addition to or in place of boots, it will be subject to the applicable checked baggage service charge or excess baggage service charge.)
  • If applicable, the first or second checked baggage service charge applies to ski equipment.
  • Ski equipment in addition to the baggage allowance will be assessed at the excess baggage charge applicable in the market for a single piece.
  • Ski and boot bags weighing more than 50 pounds (23kg) that contain other items in addition to or in place of appropriate ski equipment will be subject to the applicable overweight checked baggage service charge....
nwff is offline  
Old Jan 7, 14, 8:13 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Minneapolis, MN (MSP)
Programs: DL DM, UA 1K MM, Subway Club Member
Posts: 1,955
Originally Posted by villi View Post
I travel frequently with snowboard gear. Often, the counter agent looks around for someone to tell him/her what to do. I gladly pull up the website on my iPhone and voila, the policy says I should not be charged for the snowboard bag.

This has happened in several stations...me thinks there is not enough training on this subject.
Ha! I have also frequently checked my snowboard (in this North Face Snowboard Bag) with no questions asked. Last week, however, an agent at MSP was adamant that the policy only applied to skis and not snowboards and insisted on charing me $200 as he said the bag was oversized. He drew the line by dropping the line every traveler loves to hear from airline staff; "do you want to travel today or not". Thankfully the agent at the club was a bit more reasonable in her understanding of the rules and promptly refunded the fee. YMMV

BTW, I've also checked a kayak & paddle at BOS and MEL for $200 each way without question (besides the "you know it costs $200 right?"). Quite a deal if you ask me.

Last edited by kenn0223; Jan 7, 14 at 8:21 am
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Old Jan 7, 14, 8:48 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Originally Posted by nwff View Post
The regulations are a bit more nuanced than that. It's the ski boot bag that is not supposed to contain additional items. The ski bag is fine to contain additional items, as long as it's under 50 lbs.
Touche. I usually stuff both bags so I'm a big offender. Never had any problems with United, or Air Canada for that matter.
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Old Jan 7, 14, 9:22 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Programs: BA Gold, UA Nobody, Hilton Gold
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Originally Posted by nwff View Post
The regulations are a bit more nuanced than that. It's the ski boot bag that is not supposed to contain additional items. The ski bag is fine to contain additional items, as long as it's under 50 lbs.

I travel with a hard-sided Sportube double ski case and have never been questioned. (Boots go in a large rolling duffel.) I've not tested the 50 vs. 70 lb allowance as a 1K on the ski tube.


  • Ski and boot bags weighing more than 50 pounds (23kg) that contain other items in addition to or in place of appropriate ski equipment will be subject to the applicable overweight checked baggage service charge....
Has anyone tested the 50 vs 70lbs as a 1k? With a weekend's clothing, skis, poles and boots I'm right on 50 lbs.
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Old Jan 7, 14, 11:45 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: LAX
Posts: 176
I travel 5-10 times per year with my snowboard bag (dakine 180cm bag) and have done so for several years without incident as a gold and platinum.

My bag is often in the 50+ pound category, and sometimes have loaded two boards or my girlfriends skis along with my gear in the single bag. That's never been a problem (so far) on United / UA metal (including RJs) throughout the US as well as to Australia. Fitting the bag into a rental car? Well, sometimes that's another story....

i've been a bit more cautious on *A partner airlines - US did enforce the 50lb cap once. I often stuff a small, lightweight extra bag (empty) into the giant one so I can pull out boots and small items to "repack" at the counter quickly if there's an issue.

I've traveled with this same bag and gear on LH, NZ, and AC so far without incident.
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Old Jan 7, 14, 3:15 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Western NY
Programs: MANY
Posts: 244
We go on at least one ski vacation every season and never had to pay a fee.

Last year when my family of 5 went to the US check-in counter with total of 11 pieces of luggage, the agent had to search and find the policy fine print before letting us through. That was the only time question even was raised.

Next month we are going to CA for both Skiing and Golfing. it could be interesting, although I plan to have just one sports equipment per passenger.
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Old Feb 16, 15, 1:16 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: BOS ORD (via MSP) and occasionally AUG and MWN
Programs: UA 2P. Former DL FO in the Golden Age of Mileage Runs
Posts: 133
UA breaks skis on outbound, charges extra on inbound

Sitting in EWR, trading war stories. Spent a week in Norway, a country where half the people on the Metro have skis, and got to OSL and had to pull up UA's baggage policy and read it to three separate agents before they would accept skis and boots as one item. After the bags were through the belt, the woman tried to charge me. I chuckled and walked off. There were other folks checking skis behind me, and they charged them for their skis.

Now I'm in EWR waiting for bags (been here 45 minutes now, we can see our plane out the window, no bags). Apparently this is what happened to these kids who are 16 years old:

RNO-SFO: on time
SFO-EWR: crew delayed, apparently they were "late getting to their original departing flight."
EWR-OSL: Missed connection by about 10 minutes on to a half-empty flight (I was on it and had a row to myself). UA didn't hold it. 16 year olds on their own at an airport at EWR for 24 hours.

Arrived 24 hours late in OSL. Skis broken.

OSL-EWR: Charged for bags they weren't charged for on their way out; same problem I had had (but was old enough to stand my ground and cite policy).
EWR-DEN: Flight delayed for late inbounds (a courtesy not extended to them on the way out)
DEN-RNO: They are scheduled for a 6 minute connection in DEN. If they make it.

So next time you're on UA and IROPS happen, remember, you could be a 16 year old.
vitira is offline  
Old Feb 12, 16, 4:41 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 49
Can't Check Skis Without Signing a Damage Waiver????

Checked bags at IAH today, one regular bag and a set of skis (in a padded ski case). The gate agent told me I needed to sign a WAIVER releasing them of liability to accept a fragile item like skis!!! I told her I've never done this in my life and asked whether this applies to golf clubs too, to which she said yes. Furthermore, she said they would not accept the skis unless i signed a document saying i would waive any damage that they inflicted?

This seems wrong on so many levels, i mean I can see this for say a case of wine or some fragile painting...but skis and golf clubs in padded cases?
rbcgerard is offline  

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