Every golfer has a home course they play on a regular basis. Whether a player is a club member or just loves the convenience of a particular course that's close to home, most golfers can get by with simply placing their golf bags in the trunk and taking it easy while avoiding all of the bumps and potholes on the way to the clubhouse.
Traveling with golf clubs long distances to play another course, on the other hand, requires a completely different approach altogether. While you may be able to get by with a slow ride to the links with your current golf bag setup, failing to take appropriate care of your clubs while traveling with your equipment can be a costly mistake, especially if you're flying to your next golf course destination.
Placing your coveted clubs in the hands of total strangers like airport baggage handlers and taxi drivers is always an unsettling feeling, but traveling with golf clubs doesn't have to be a worrisome notion. Fortunately there are several golf club protection options that traveling golfers can utilize to ensure that when they travel with golf clubs, their clubs will arrive safely and securely at their destination.
Air Travel With Golf Clubs
We've all heard the horror stories about major airlines mishandling luggage and damaging personal property for years. There's no doubt that many baggage handlers are more careful with customers' bags than others, but when it comes to a huge investment like your golf clubs and equipment, you simply do not want to take any risks. Consider the following tips to make sure that your clubs are safe, even if they land in the dubious hands of a disgruntled airline employee.
- Before you check golf clubs, check your airline. Every airline has different policies regarding special bags and different baggage types. That's why you should check with your airline to make sure there are no additional fees or special stipulations that could put a damper on your trip (and wallet) when checking your golf clubs. Most major airlines have detailed information on what can and can't be checked, and it's usually available online. For example, you can check out Delta's policy on checked baggage and golf clubs.
- Before you travel with your clubs, purchase a travel golf cover. Golf travel covers and travel bags deliver the extra protection you need when traveling by air with your golf clubs. Today's golf travel bags are typically made with a flexible, padded material that allows a little stretching when covering your golf bag. These bags are perfect for infrequent travelers or short trips, but if you're looking for absolute protection, then you'll want to consider a golf travel cover. Golf travel covers consist of rigid padding and form by offering molded shells that provide an outer layer of solid protection for everything that lies underneath. Golf travel covers are designed to take the worst beatings that any baggage handlers can dispense, and then some.
- Pack your golf clubs with care. Now that you've checked your airline and can confirm that your clubs will be flying with you to your next golf destination, it's time to do a little due diligence on your part by packing your golf clubs securely into your golf travel cover. While most travel covers and bags fit tightly around golf club sets, there's always a little wiggle room left for your equipment. You can eliminate any gaps by leaving all of your golf headcovers on your clubs, then stuffing the extra space with golf towels. This will ensure that every one of your clubs is snug in its designated place before checking your golf clubs at the airport.
You've already got enough to worry about when planning a trip out of town, the last thing you need on your mind is whether or not your valuable set of golf clubs and equipment are protected from uncaring hands. Traveling with golf clubs on an airline with clear policies and a good track record with checked baggage is a good first step. Making sure that any golf equipment moving through the conveyer belts and callous hands of baggage handlers has the right protection is your next line of defense. Using the right golf travel cover or travel bag while packing your clubs tight should wrap everything up, giving your clubs the best chance for making it to your next golf destination in pristine condition.