Having spent years travelling around the world with windsurfing/kite kit we know a bit or two about travelling with gear. However, when we went to the canaries for a quick wing foil holiday we realised how different it was, travelling with foil gear.
For our first trip we packed our gear in old SUP bags because there was not really a credible wing foil travel bag on the market. This is what gave us a taste for travelling with foil gear and the idea/desire to make an amazing travel bag. Below is our journey and insight.
How is flying with foil gear? For a start the gear is smaller! Like A LOT smaller. This means it is lighter and a lot more manageable. Probably the single biggest part of travelling with wing gear is the fact that you can put your wing foil board travel bag onto an airport trolley and still get through the doors. With windsurfing gear this was never ever possible. The gear was always too high or too wide to fit through. Wing foil equipment however is no problem. You can get through all the doors completely hassle free. It is an absolute dream!
The next best thing about travelling with wing foiling gear is the packing. With a good wing foil board travel bag you can get everything you need in the one bag. This being the board, the foil (complete) and wings. Put all of that in the bag and you are still within the weight limit. It’s amazing! And that means you don’t have to spend your entire time at the airport stressing out that the person behind the counter is going to kill your bank balance for overweight baggage.
So having learnt that travelling with your wing foiling equipment is pretty straight forward we went on to design the best wing foil board travel bag we could. We wanted it to be light but robust. Practical and sturdy. This is not an easy task because inherently the stronger you make it the heavier it is going to be.
We broke the bag down into chunks. Material, padding, design. We chose the strongest materials we could that were still practical in the context. 680D Nylon features in the base and side as it is the toughest wearing material that is still light weight. Our exclusive Hex-Tech material on the top as the water resistant fabric meant if you got caught in a shower you weren’t going to absorb kilos of moisture. We opted for a lightweight 10mm padding, again this is enough to absorb the bumps but not so much that it adds unnecessary weight. So that was the material and padding taken care of. We then looked into the design.
When designing this wing foil bag we wanted it to work. We wanted to make a travel bag that had features in/on it that made travelling easier. For example the triple carry handle system on the rail. This makes carrying the foil board travel bag SO MUCH easier. Other details like the nose and tail carry handles help as well, especially when putting the bag on the roof of a hire car.
On the internals of the bag we designed a padded foil leaf that can serve multiple rolls. It can take all your foil parts and keep them safe in designated padded compartments. It also sits on top of your board adding some additional padding and protection. When not being used for travelling you can completely remove the foil leaf and have it as a foil bag. This is super handy when travelling in a hire car (board on the roof, foil broken down and stored in the foil leaf).
One controversial element to the bag was whether to add wheels or not. After trying out a lot of different options we decided not to, and here is why. Adding wheels to a bag means adding a minimum of 3.5kg. The allowance of weight with easyJet for sports equipment is 32kg, so for wheels to take up over 10% of this expensive weight allowance just seems crazy (it means having to sacrifice taking an extra wing). And like we explained at the start of this blog, wing foil travel bags fit on airport trolleys perfectly (see pics below)! So for us this was a no brainer!
Now we do understand that wheels on bags for some people is a must, we do get that. So we have a cunning solution for you. Rather then commit weight and expense to a bag we looked into a solution and will update here shortly with a video.
In summary, our foil board travel bag really has taken a heap of designing and a lot of thought. We use these bags all the time and for us it was important that, like all the FBC products, it was the best it could be. We wanted a foil travel bag that was super practical and would work in the real world.
Please do contact us if you have any questions at all. We are always very keen to talk about our products and will try our very best to answer any questions you may have.
Check out our YouTube page here as well for some videos and info on our products.
Catch you on the water shortly.