Save Money on Adventure Travel with This Unique Packing Tip

You finally saved up enough dough to go on that epic surf trip with your buddies. To save cash you want to limit the number of bags you're taking and with board bag fees being $100+ each way, I don't blame you.

Taking a duffle-bag or roll-a-board full of clothes is an option, unless you choose to bring a guitar or camera gear in addition to the typical (and necessary) backpack full of personal stuff. I think the best kept secret of surfers travelling on a budget is packing their clothes in their board bag with their boards. Easy way to pack clothes and even provides some extra protection for your boards because we all know how gentle and caring some baggage handlers can be.

Packing for a surf trip

Packing's simple for a 7-day trip. I usually pack 5 t-shirts/tanks into a giant Ziploc bag with 2 pairs of shorts, a swimsuit, rash guard, and some underwear. I'll actually strategically pack everything into the bag; making sure it's all even and then lay it on top of the bag while I'm zipping it up. Keeping it airtight prevents the bag from popping and creates more room in the board bag.

I always bring an extra t-shirt and swimsuit in my carry-on, just in case my board bag doesn't make it to your final destination with you. I also keep my toothbrush and toothpaste in my backpack as well.

Flying with surf boards

Now comes the time to slam practically everything you'll need for 7-days into one bag—Oh boy! First go the boards, lay them on each other, leaving them in your day bag and if you don't use a day bag on the regular, you should! Most travel bags are equipped with a bunch of nifty pockets and that's where I put all my fins, fin key, leashes, ding repair, and wax. Grab that bag of clothes you packed and throw it on top.

Sometimes you may want to split the cost of baggage fees and share a board bag with a buddy. Make sure everything stays even in the board bag. Consider putting a clothes bag between the noses of longboards, if longboarding is your thing. I've found that there's generally more space between the noses of longboards and that just increases the chance of your board(s) breaking in transit.

Costa Rica Surf Trip Photo Credit: Adam Fricke

Any last minute loose items can be used to fill up open space. I throw my sunscreen, first aid kit, bodysurfing fins, and car tie downs inside. Be sure to put your sunscreen in a plastic grocery bag to contain the possible explosion of sunscreen from the pressure changes.

Now zip that baby up and go get some sleep, you've got a big travel day tomorrow and a fun week of surfing ahead of you!

Surfing Photo Credit: Adam Fricke

P.S. Do not watch how the baggage handlers handle your board bag, unless you want to scream and cry in front of everyone in the middle of the airport.


*Learn more about Justin's recent surf trip to Costa Rica here: Weekend Warrior*
posted by
Justin Fricke
Blogger at The Weekend Warrior
As a member of #TeamSierra, Justin Fricke receives promotional consideration from Sierra Trading Post. Justin traded in his comfy desk job for a life of adventure on the road. Nowadays he's a freelance content creator while living in a van full time, exploring America. Follow his adventures on his website, The Weekend Warrior, and on Instagram and Facebook.
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