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Travel with clubs or not.

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hi all,

     Next week I will fly down to Orlando with my brother. He is going for a 2 day lesson package, since he only played a few times.  I will go as a vacation and to play a round each day. And take a private lesson to have my swing evaluated. He is is going to buy a travel bag, since he is fitted +2" in length and needed jumbo grips. After reading many travel bag reviews here, I will have him get the Ogio Straight Jacket. Decent price. I might get one too. Me flying to play golf once every couple of years, I don't need anything more $$$. I can then wrap clothing around my woods for protection.  I am waiting to find out rental rates also, to determine if it's worth buying a bag. Yet I do have a question. I was fitted for my clubs grip size -1 and club length +1.25. Will renting standard length clubs really make a huge difference playing? Will it cause any problems? I am only trying to see if it's worth spending the money on a bag I might not use for some time again. Plus, a curiosity question. Anyone fly Jetblue with their clubs? I was on their website regarding golf luggage. Within their weigh limits. Makes sense. I will leave my Titleist cartbag home and use my very old Sun Mountain featherweight stand bag. Only a few pockets, yet for 2 days in sunny Fla, doable. 14 clubs and one pair of shoes. Ok, understandable. Here's the kicker, 3 golf balls. What???? Unless that was a web mistake. Unless they meant 3 boxes?  We aren't pros, and to use only 3 balls playing 2 or more rounds is rare. I was going to ask them about it, yet who knows how long it will take to get through to customer service and who knows if the person I talk to will know anything. I will buy a box once down there. I will find a GG, PGA Super store, whatever. Then pack another pair of shoes in my regular luggage. 

post #2 of 24

@Alohaed ,

 

But a good bag and take your clubs.  You will enjoy the trip much more that way.  I bought one a few years ago and don't regret it.

post #3 of 24

Another idea:  Go to a FedEx Office location and SHIP your clubs from there.  When my wife and I fly to a golf destination we put put our clubs, shoes, and pretty much everything ELSE we need for the trip inside the 12 x 12 x 48 FedEx box and ship it right to the place we're staying.

 

We've used the same boxes 4 times now.  Little tape in the right places and they should go another 4 trips.  $50 each way on a plane x 2 is $200. Not to mention the hassle of lugging them through airport, waiting to see if they show up, shelpping them on a bus to car rental then doing it AGAIN when you return home. Shipping each trip is about $80 because I'm a FedEx employee.

 

On the plane we have one small bag and I usually take my camera bag.  When we show up at the hotel or resort, I call the hotel operator and have the boxes delivered to the room.  Tip the delivery guy $10, unpack boxes and we have everything we need including our clubs.  Never had an issue with them not arriving before we get wherever we're going; no damage or any other issues.

 

Because this service exists, I won't travel with my clubs and pay airline fees ever again.  The biggest hassle is having to tote the clubs from room to car for golf then back to the room to pack 'em up when we're ready to leave.

 

Ship 'em if you can.  Much easier process.

 

dave

post #4 of 24

I would second @dave s's idea.  But I have a hard travel case already, and besides I travel a lot so all my check-in bags are free.  One of the perks of being a Premier 1K member (United).

 

Places I travel often, I already have a set of clubs there.  Just got tired of lugging it around all the time to the same places.

 

Now when I go to Vegas or Mesquite, I will use my hard travel case for my club and take it with me.  I don't like renting a club.

 

In fact, as @dave s suggested, it will probably cost you the same (or more, if you rent it twice) to rent a set of club than have it shipped.

post #5 of 24

Hard cases are good to protect the clubs.  But don't be surprised if the bag gets very banged up and you might end up needing another one very soon.

 

My case has 2 out of 4 locks completely busted, and it seems that the airlines started to be more careful with it - they don't want to deal with the mess probably.

 

Have fun on your trip!

post #6 of 24

I've used the same soft sided travel bag for about 15 years and never had a club damaged in flight.  I don't fly a lot, but my clubs have flown at least 25 times with me to various destinations using the same case.   They even flew through 5 connecting flights to Malaysia on 3 different airlines.   It's a soft case, but very heavy padded material.  It's a very tight fit too, and I think that helps.   IMO...the hard cases are overkill unless you travel weekly with your clubs, and they take up too much space anyway.  when you're loaded to the hilt with luggage going to the airport on a family vacation, a hard case will be a pain in the @ss...I think.  When you are loading down a SUV with a mountain of bags, a soft sided case is a must..IMO....much easier to squeeze it in...LOL

 

For many years, I always flew with a backup set of clubs, but I don't even do that anymore.   If something breaks, I'll accept it and move on.  So far...I have no issues.  If the clubs are packed smartly, nothing should break no matter how the bag is tossed around in transit.

 

 

Funny sidenote.........  the first time I decided to fly with my "gamer" set was a trip to St. Croix about 5 years ago.   We had airline issues, and had to switch flights to another airline along the way!!   My family went to St. Croix, but our baggage went to Texas! Oh boy...

 

We checked 5 large bags including my clubs........only 1 suitcase arrived with us.  My golf clubs and the other bags arrived 1 day later.   Of course we had already bought new clothes because we had no clue if or when they'd arrive....Hehe...that's an entirely different topic!

post #7 of 24

I have a Samsonite soft sided case as well. I wrap some towels around and in between the heads for extra protection and haven't had a problem. I like the FedEx option as well.

post #8 of 24

I took a 2 week vacation last summer to visit my parents and simply snapped the canvas cover on my stand bag and checked it.  All my woods came with club head covers when I purchased them so I wasn't too concerned about those but I was a little worried about having a shaft get broken since the bag itself has a little stiffness to it and the cover is just the loose canvas.  They turned out alright though and that was a relief.  One thing that was really cool that I didn't expect is on the return flight when I went to the baggage carousel to get my 1 checked bag my clubs were nowhere to be found.  I noticed a holding area nearby where the airline kept everyone's clubs so instead of hurling them on the carousel with everyone else's bags you just show an ID and you're off.  Anyway maybe it's a really bad idea travelling without some sort of special travel case and I just got lucky.  I plan on taking a similar trip this summer and doing the same thing with my clubs so we'll see.

post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alohaed View Post
 

Hi all,

     Next week I will fly down to Orlando with my brother. He is going for a 2 day lesson package, since he only played a few times.  I will go as a vacation and to play a round each day. And take a private lesson to have my swing evaluated. He is is going to buy a travel bag, since he is fitted +2" in length and needed jumbo grips. After reading many travel bag reviews here, I will have him get the Ogio Straight Jacket. Decent price. I might get one too. Me flying to play golf once every couple of years, I don't need anything more $$$. I can then wrap clothing around my woods for protection.  I am waiting to find out rental rates also, to determine if it's worth buying a bag. Yet I do have a question. I was fitted for my clubs grip size -1 and club length +1.25. Will renting standard length clubs really make a huge difference playing? Will it cause any problems? I am only trying to see if it's worth spending the money on a bag I might not use for some time again. Plus, a curiosity question. Anyone fly Jetblue with their clubs? I was on their website regarding golf luggage. Within their weigh limits. Makes sense. I will leave my Titleist cartbag home and use my very old Sun Mountain featherweight stand bag. Only a few pockets, yet for 2 days in sunny Fla, doable. 14 clubs and one pair of shoes. Ok, understandable. Here's the kicker, 3 golf balls. What???? Unless that was a web mistake. Unless they meant 3 boxes?  We aren't pros, and to use only 3 balls playing 2 or more rounds is rare. I was going to ask them about it, yet who knows how long it will take to get through to customer service and who knows if the person I talk to will know anything. I will buy a box once down there. I will find a GG, PGA Super store, whatever. Then pack another pair of shoes in my regular luggage.

 

We have a group that goes to Orlando every March and we fly JetBlue. The first checked bag is free, so we check our clubs and take a carry-on (no charge) for our clothes.

I always pack two dozen balls and they've said nothing about that over the past few years. Their listing is just a suggestion, it's important to be within the weight limit & that's easy. I also put all the bathroom stuff in with the clubs.

 

Buy a case and take your own weapons, you'll be happier.

post #10 of 24

JetBlue has curbside baggage check too, costs $2.00 plus a tip, worth it for the non-lugging around.

post #11 of 24

Surprised this hasn't been mentioned yet, but www.shipsticks.com/ offers a service just for this.

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all your comments and ideas. My brother got his bag, and will pay the $40 extra bag fee each way. Renting clubs, where we will be is only $25, so for me to buy one of the two bags I am interested in: Ogio Straightjacket or the ClubGlove(and Stiff Arm), to use a year from now again, I will put that money to use. Got a good alternative option . Rather than rent, pay greens fees, then the money for a 45 min or 60 minute private lesson, for $200, I can join in his the full day class: 3 hours on the range(lessons, practice, evaluations, etc), have lunch, then play 9 holes with the instructor. Then a round afterwards if we choose too. HELL YES. I will take advantage. Not only are the rentals included in this price, my brother gets $50 discounted from his price. It might be costing me $50 - $70 more than what I planned, yet why not. I can always us lessons. Especially on the course. Then the next day I will simply rent clubs and pay the $35 greens fees on the other course.

post #13 of 24

I have the two-round rule. If I will play golf at least twice, I will probably ship my clubs ahead.

 

If I'll only play once, I'll rent clubs at the other end - hopefully with irons I'm considering for the future.

post #14 of 24

I used to carry my clubs with me when traveling and having the opportunity to play.  I found it to be just a hassle, and I did not like renting clubs because I just could not hit them and really did not enjoy the experience of playing on a nice course without my clubs...I will second the idea of using FEDEX and sending the clubs to your destination and sending them back.  Lately, the last year or so, I have just chosen not to bring or send clubs as it just got to be such a hassle to check them, get them out, carry to course, re-check them and have them shipped back.

 

I guess my new rule is that if I am going to play more than one round while traveling, I may send them before hand.  Just to play one round, I just skip it, go to Starbucks and watch people....

post #15 of 24

I don't understand the hassle and all the complaining about checking golf clubs...

 

If you are taking a vacation, you are checking luggage anyway............it's just 1 more bag.  "Here ya go....put this with the others"....and hand it off.   Pretty simple..says me!  LOL...what the hell? All the bellyaching makes absolutely no sense to me....

 

IMO...it would be more of a hassle making a special trip to a fed ex office to ship.   When you check bags at the airport, you are already there!! Haha  I wonder if the people who struggle to see the convenience of checking a bag rarely travel?  For them, maybe this is a daunting task?   I dunno'.......?

post #16 of 24

I checked my clubs at the baggage counter.  The cost was about 60% the price of my seat on the same plane. This a budget Asian airline. I will certainly look for alternative flights next time. 

post #17 of 24

I have had great luck with Southwest and JetBlue.  Neither charged for my clubs to be checked.  These are two excellent airlines.

post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by boogielicious View Post
 

I have had great luck with Southwest and JetBlue.  Neither charged for my clubs to be checked.  These are two excellent airlines.

I fly southwest whenever possible, and I don't even think I've ever paid to check clubs.  Each passenger can check 2 bags up to 50lbs without paying extra.   My wife is usually in charge of all the airline stuff, so I'm not the authority on cost.......LOL  I just place them on the scale and say "here ya go"..HEH

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