With our meagre hopes for a white Christmas already a thing of the past, it’s time to look away from the UK in our hunt for powdered pastures. There will be plenty of people headed out to the snowy slopes of France and Switzerland in the hopes of ploughing through some fresh snow on their skis and snowboards, so there’s going to be a lot of thinking about how to get around lugging those huge, awkward bits of luggage all the way to your luxury mountainside accommodation.
Have no fear, whether you’re planning on cutting through the best powder that America can provide or sampling the delights of Austrian Apres, ParcelHero can help ensure that your equipment is on hand.
Sending your skis – or snowboard – by courier is an easy way to get your skis to our chalet without having to navigate the complex world of transporting them as baggage on your plane, train or car journey. With ParcelHero, and this guide to shipping your equipment, your skis can be waiting for you when you arrive.
How to package Skis and Snowboards
One of the most difficult aspects of shipping skis is their difficult shape, which makes it tough to find a box in which to package them. The right box is crucial in ensuring that your skis get to their destination in one piece. In fact, no matter what you’re shipping there are a couple of rules to make sure that you have the right box for the job.
- Use a box that’s strong enough for what you’re shipping – try to avoid reusing boxes, especially if they are damaged.
- Make sure that your box isn’t too small. You can tell this is the case if the contents are pressing against the walls of the box.
- Make sure your box isn’t too big – if the contents are moving around too much, there is too much space inside.
There are several ski specific boxes that you can buy online. Some are only available to buy in bulk, so if this is your only planned trip in a while, it might be better to source boxes from elsewhere. If you are in a position to visit a UPS store, they do sometimes stock ski boxes. Other boxes could also be repurposed, but it’s important to ensure that the box you use is strong enough to survive being handled many times during transit. Whatever box you choose, reinforce it heavily with packing tape, especially on the corners.
It is also important to properly pack your skis with a packing material that properly keeps them in place. If they have enough space to move around within the box, they are likely to be damaged in transport. They are likely to arrive safely if they are well cushioned and suspended within the box, not touching any of the walls. ParcelHero suggests bubble wrap or packing pellets to suspend and cushion the contents of your box.
Because sending skis could be a difficult proposition, there are several more specialised options available. For example, Sportube is a company that manufacture ski transport solutions. These take the form of tubes specifically designed to safely and effectively carry skis and snowboards. Though they are not as cheap as a cardboard box, they are certainly a potential option, especially if you travel with skis often. As they are strong and sturdy, they’re a great choice for sending by courier, as they will have no trouble weathering the bumps and scrapes that are common during deliveries.
Using your ski bag as a shipping container
Another great option is to make use of your ski bag as your packaging container. These are generally designed to protect your equipment from the bumps and bashes that everyday use brings, so they are a sturdy option in which to send your skis. In fact, if you are creative in packing your bag, it may even be the best way to send your stuff.
Alongside your skis or snowboards, you can also use your bag to send your clothing and equipment. In fact, clothes could make a perfect packing material, keeping your snowboard in great shape to take on the slopes. You can fit all the equipment you need for a skiing weekend away in just the one bag, meaning that you can travel baggage and stress free.
However, it must be kept in mind that a ski bag is not a hard material, so there is an increased possibility that your items may be damaged. If the ski bag is properly packed and padded there shouldn’t be any issue, but it is something that should be considered and extra care taken.
Some things to keep in mind
Because it’s difficult to find the right equipment to send your skis, it can be tempting to use a more inventive option. Some people even suggest that sending your skis in nothing more than a large amount of bubble wrap and tape. Obviously this isn’t a great idea if you’re hoping to get your skis there in one piece, but believe it or not putting them in a bad box can be just as dangerous. Another commonly shared piece of advice is to take other boxes and blend them into one larger, ski sized box. This leaves your skis or snowboards just as vulnerable to being damaged, as the frankenbox is hardly structurally sound.
One thing it is important to keep in mind is that if you’re heading to the whiter pastures outside of the EU, you will need to pay customs duties and charges for your equipment to be allowed into the country. For a little more information on those fees, make sure you check out our guide to shipping to the USA and Canada.
Although snow isn’t a courier’s best friend, we’re more than happy to get your snowboards to the fresh powder. If you’re heading to the slopes this year, why lug your skis on the plane when they could be waiting for you when you get there? As long as you stick with the tips we’ve laid out for you, shipping your skis or equipment to the best snow will be a breeze.