Some athletes and enthusiasts must travel with ice skates, figure skates, or hockey skates for a competition or camp. And if it is more convenient to fly than to drive, you will have to bring the necessary gear on a flight.
The Quick Answer: The Transportation Security Administration, a.k.a. the TSA, allows ice skates on a plane through airport security in both carry-on and checked bags.
If you have questions about whether you can bring ice skates on a plane, the latest TSA guidelines, how to pack skates, etc., you have come to the right place! This article will discuss everything you need to know about flying with ice skates.
Can You Take Ice Skates Through Airport Security?
According to the TSA guidelines for ice skaters, when flying domestically in the US, you are permitted to carry ice skates or roller blades in your checked luggage and carry-on bags.
If you bring ice skates in a carry-on, your luggage may be subjected to additional screening by the TSA officer if it poses safety concerns. Place your bag separately on the x-ray belt so the officer can see the skates clearly.
We recommend that you carry a small skate bag so there is minimum clutter, and the officers can inspect its contents quickly. Make sure the size of the bag you carry is per the airline rules. The size of a carry-on should not be more than 45 linear inches.
You can cover the skate blades with a hard guard and soakers to make the screening process more manageable. This will protect the blades in case the plane is turbulent.
It will also show the officer that they are safely packed because the final decision rests with the TSA officer on whether you should be allowed to take the skates through security.
Can You Pack Ice Skates In Checked Bags?
If you are unsure whether the ice skates will be allowed in carry-on bags, you should pack them in checked bags. Sharp objects, such as knives and scissors, are not allowed in carry-ons but can be kept in checked bags.
But there is a risk in keeping your skates in checked bags as they are often misplaced or lost by the airlines. Nothing is more annoying than breaking in a pair of skates right before a competition or competing in rental skates!
This is why you should never check your ice skates if you can avoid them. You also have to wait while your bags roll out with checked bags. This could take time, and sometimes it could be delayed, which is not ideal if you are running late.
If you are traveling to or from another country that does not allow skates in carry-ons, you will have no choice but to keep them in checked bags. In such a case, you should put a GPS tracker or an Apple air tag in your bag to track its location.
Some small flights ask you to gate-check the luggage. All airlines offer gate checking free of charge. This happens when the overhead bins are full.
The bags that are gate checked are tagged and stored in the airplane cargo hold, which is right below the passenger deck. You can pick up the bags as you usually do at baggage claim.
Can You Use Ice Skates On A Plane?
Obviously, you cannot wear ice skets on a plane, even if you are flying with Icelandair!
How to carry skates
If you are not bringing them in a specifically designed ice skate bag but in your carry-on bag, you should ensure they are properly wrapped, perhaps in a towel or some other thick item. And don’t unpack them till you reach your destination.
If you keep them in overhead bins and they fall during the flight, the sharp blade or the heavy weight of the skates could injure someone. This is why, ideally, you should carry them in a small bag (an ice skate bag) that you can store under the seat in front as a personal item.
Can You Take Ice Skates On An International Flight?
The US TSA allows carrying ice skates or roller blades in carry-on bags. But every country has different rules for what you can bring on the plane, and many of them are not so liberal about carrying sharp objects like ice skates on board.
So, we recommend you call the airlines in advance and ask about their rules and regulations. It would be best if you also researched the local TSA rules of the country you are traveling to be 100% sure.
The UK government services and information website does not specify carrying ice skates in their hand baggage restrictions. So, to be safe, you should check your ice skates.
The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority guidelines state you will be allowed to bring ice skates in carry-on and checked luggage. Blades packed separately will not be allowed in carry-ons. And skates with detachable blades should be kept in checked bags.
In case you are stopped for questioning at the security checkpoint, it is always wise to keep proper documentation in your bag to give to the security agents. The documents should include your identification and proof of registration for the ice skating competition or camp.
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I have been traveling around the world by air since the early 70s and living overseas too. I worked for British Airways for a number of years and I am also a private pilot. About Me