Flying To Chile With Kayaks 2011

31 Oct

For 2010 – 2011 kayak season here is the latest information on flying with kayaks:

(Thanks for Stacy Ann Mcbain and Jeff Robinson for collecting this info)

Delta – not accepted
American -not accepted
Horizon – not accepted
Air Canada – not accepted

Continental, United and US Air have policies:

Continental Airlines will accept one pack containing a lightweight assembly kayak. The pack must weigh less than 50 pounds (23kg).

Continental is not liable for damage to kayaks.

Excess Valuation may not be purchased for kayaks.

If applicable, the first or second bag fee applies to kayaks.

Continental does not accept canoes, full-size kayaks or jet skis.

Kiteboard (for a weight comparison) If the kiteboard/kiteboard container is over 50 lbs (23kg) and/or 62 (157 cm) total linear inches (L + W + H), a $10

Travel from N. to S. America (travel w/in N. america was cheaper)

United States 200 USD

Consists of shell and paddles.

View fee information
Maximum size/weight
110 pounds (50 kg)

Maximum length
109 inches (277 cm)

Other information
Allow an extra 30 minutes at check-in.
Cannot be accommodated on Airbus A320 or Airbus A319 aircraft.

If your itinerary includes United Express, please contact United for information regarding aircraft cargo hold limits.

Other Notes

Regardless of who you fly with, put the kayak in a bag with handles that make it easy to carry. Not only does this disguise it a bit from the checkin agent, but also if it’s easy to carry then the baggage handlers aren’t going to make a fuss about it at any transfer along the way. Also, it seems best to avoid the word “kayak” with the checkin agent if it all possible. I think many of them think of sea kayaks and they don’t seem to know their own policies even if their company does fly kayaks. Try to use more general terms like “sporting equipment” or “surf equipment”, and only tell them it’s a kayak if pressed. Try to avoid discussion of what it is and focus on the fact that it’s an oversize bag and you’re happy to pay the oversize charges.

Flying with kayaks:

US Air sounds like it might be the best deal this year, since it includes the paddle. Otherwise the paddle is usually considered overlength so you have to pay an extra $100 for it.

I think Alaska will fly a kayak. Even though Alaska and Horizon are the same company, some flights are Alaska flights and some are Horizon flights. I think if it’s an Alaska flight and you’re checking in at an Alaska ticket counter, you can pay to fly the kayak.

Don’t forget the power of cold hard cash in these situations. Everyone I know who heavily tipped the baggage handler at the curb (the guy who helps you unload at the airport) and told him they had to get the boats on the plane, got them on the plane. Obviously, it’s a gamble to plan on this strategy though.

Renting Boats in Pucon – Ben May – Rodrigo and Ema – Ian Garcia ( thats more of a buying a kayak and then selling it later type thing ) –David Hughes —

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