Everything You Need to Know About Taking Your Golf Clubs Abroad
You’re fancying a change from your local golf club, so you decide you want to jet off to warmer, more exotic climates to the likes of Vilamoura, Malaga and other places and play on some of the most iconic courses Europe has to offer. You’re not alone on that! However, there’s the age-old dilemma of wanting to take your own clubs away with you, but not having to pay a fortune for doing so. Anyone who has been on a golf holiday has come across this predicament, so don’t worry, you’re not alone.
Unfortunately, taking your clubs abroad isn’t as simple as popping them in your luggage, checking in and collecting them on the other side. With the age of airlines adding on costs for anything and everything, expenses can soon rack up if you’re not careful.
That’s why we’ve created a guide for you, covering everything from check-in to collecting your clubs and everything in between.
First things first…
Take your clubs abroad or hire some when you’re there?
This isn’t as clear-cut as you think. Whoever you speak to will likely have a different preference, some people swear by taking their own clubs and only using their own clubs. While some love the convenience of hiring clubs abroad.
First, to help you make the choice, we’ll go through the benefits of hiring clubs abroad…
For starters, your golf clubs are your prized possession, by taking them in your baggage there’s always the risk that they could go missing. It’s a slight risk and it certainly hasn’t happened to anyone who we know, but there’s always that risk
It can be more cost efficient to hire clubs abroad. For instance, ClubstoHire has brilliant prices on hiring clubs. Some airlines have steep charges for taking your clubs abroad, so it might not always be the most cost-efficient of processes.
As I mentioned, some people love the convenience of hiring golf clubs abroad. Who wants to step out of the likes of Faro or Malaga airport to 30 odd degrees heat and drag their golf clubs about with them while they try and find a taxi or use public transport. Well, there is a solution to this problem. Our transfers include 1 golf bag per person in the final price, so there’s no getting sweaty carrying your clubs about with you when you book your transfer itinerary with us!
Now we’ve been through the benefits, you can make your own choice whether you would prefer to hire clubs abroad.
Read on for tips on taking your clubs abroad with you.
Charges for taking your golf clubs from different airlines
Ryanair Golf Clubs Charges
Ryanair has separate prices depending on whether you book to take your golf clubs when you book online or if you pay at the airport.
As you would expect, paying online is the cheapest – £35 each way (max weight – 20kg)
If you decide to pay at the airport – £40 each way (max weight – 20kg)
Be sure to check the weight of your luggage prior to getting to the airport. If you go overweight, you can expect to pay a costly £10 per kilo you are overweight.
Jet2 Golf Clubs Charges
If you’re jumping on a Jet2 flight to tee off in Costa del Sol or elsewhere in Europe, then you’ll have to pay an additional fee if you want to take your golf clubs with you.
You can take your clubs with you for a total price of £30 for each way (£60 for a return flight). Be aware, there are weight and dimensions that you won’t want to exceed. There’s a max weight of 22kg and size of 182 x 91cm.
Lufthansa Golf Clubs Charges
If you’re within your free baggage allowance in terms of size and weight, then you can take your clubs on your flight with Lufthansa for free of charge.
If you’re travelling economy, then your 1 piece of hold luggage cannot exceed 23kg. Whereas if you’re flying business class, you can take 2 pieces of hold luggage with the maximum weight of 32kg.
The maximum size for luggage is 158cm (height + width + depth). See free baggage rules here.
If you want to take additional baggage or your clubs will exceed the allowances above, you will have to pay a charge of €50 each way, so €100 for a return flight.
Flybe Golf Clubs Charges
Flybe counts golf clubs as an ‘exceptional item’, so there is always a fee incurred for taking them in your hold luggage. Keeping with the theme of all the airlines, fees are charged per flight, so you can expect to pay £60 to take your golf clubs on a return flight (£30 each way).
British Airways Golf Clubs Charges
BA’s rules with sporting equipment are like those of Lufthansa, you can take your golf clubs as a part of your hold luggage allowance (not in addition to).
You can take your golf clubs as long as they do not exceed the dimensions of 190 x 75 x 65cm (I’m sure they won’t!) Also, they cannot exceed the weight allowance of 23kg.
If you want to take a suitcase as well as your golf clubs on your holiday, you always have the option to pay for additional luggage. When travelling in Europe to/from London Gatwick or Stansted airports, you will have to pay £36 for any additional bags. All other routes carry a charge of £60 per additional bag (prices are charged each way).
EasyJet Golf Clubs Charges
EasyJet count golf clubs as ‘small sports equipment’, so you will have to pay an additional charge to take them with you on your flight. Charges do vary from booking online and paying when you’re at the airport, so we would always recommend booking in advance.
When you book online, you will pay £37 each way and if you pay at the airport, expect to pay £47 each way.
Unfortunately, there are additional costs other than the airline costs when you take your golf clubs abroad with you. I say, unfortunately, but this one is a necessity.
Remember when I said some people opt for hiring clubs rather than taking their own as they would not want to risk losing their prized possessions. There is always a chance this could happen, albeit a very low chance, however, there’s still that slim chance. If the worst were to happen, you would like the piece of mind that you wouldn’t be out of pocket, wouldn’t you?
That’s why we would always recommend insurance!
|Airline||Cost of flight||Extra Baggage Fee||Insurance Charge||Total Cost (return flight)|
|Ryanair||–||£70||£60||Price of flight + £130|
|Jet2||–||£60||£60||Price of flight + £120|
|Lufthansa||–||–||£60||Price of flight + £60|
|Flybe||–||£60||£60||Price of flight + £120|
|British Airways||–||–||£60||Price of flight + £60|
|EasyJet||–||£74||£60||Price of flight + £134|
Things to remember when taking your golf clubs on a plane
Clearly label your bag and make it identifiable
We keep coming back to this, but if the very worst were to happen, you would want to know in your head that if your bag does go missing, but is found, that whoever finds it would be able to contact you.
Also, by adding something bright, like bits of string, to your bag, will make it much more identifiable when you’re looking at every golf bag which looks the same on the conveyor belt.
Use your bag as additional storage
If you’re flying with Lufthansa or BA, why not just use your golf bag as extra storage. Place clothes and other belongings inside your bag, around your clubs. Also, you get the added benefit of your clubs being protected by the clothes. We don’t know this for sure, but our guess is that airline employees don’t carefully place your bag down when moving it. We’re guessing it’s more a toss in the direction of where it is supposed to go. Make sure you protect those clubs!
Get a durable, well-made bag
Some people swear by a hard bag for your golf clubs, which offers maximum protection. If your very cautious about your clubs getting damaged, we would recommend a hard bag. However, if you are a bit more laid back and are happy with a soft bag, maybe with some extra padding around the clubs, then we would recommend a lightweight pencil bag.
Whichever bag you go for, make sure you don’t scrimp, and you choose a well-made bag. The cost may be slightly higher at first, but a durable bag will last you years!
Money Saving Tips
Book beforehand, don’t wait until you get to the airport
As you can see above, if you book your golf bag as extra luggage online, rather than at the airport (if you must pay for extra luggage), the prices are cheaper. It might be tempting to leave things until last minute, especially when you haven’t made your mind up. However, just bite the bullet and make the payment online to save those pennies (pounds).
Use a pencil bag
We touched on a pencil bag being a lot less bulky than a hard-cased golf bag, so it is much easier to carry around. However, they are much more slimline than your usual bag, so there’s less chance of being over any baggage limits.
In short, a pencil bag is a lot less bulky, but with enough room for one set (maybe even two) sets of clubs.
Work out the total cost of the flight, rather than just the golf club cost
When you’re looking for a flight, whether that be on Skyscanner or wherever else, don’t forget to consider the total cost of the flight and any extra charges. You might think that a Ryanair flight is much cheaper than a flight with BA, but is it with the extra charges included?
Some airlines such as Lufthansa and BA allow golf clubs in your baggage allowance which is included in the price of your flight. If you travel light and don’t go over the maximum allowance, this will avoid the extra fees they charge for overweight baggage.
To hire or not to hire?
Ultimately, hiring golf clubs once you reach your destination is usually cheaper than taking your own clubs with you. We’ve gone through the pros and cons, but in the end, the decision is down to you.
We love taking our own clubs abroad with us, but if you’re on a budget trip, we would recommend hiring once you’re there.
What to do when you’re on the other side
Forget about the hassle of dragging your golf clubs from the luggage conveyor belt, out of the doors into the blazing heat and to the taxi stand or public transport station, to wait in line and get more and more sweaty.
Why put yourself through that, when you can book your golf transfer itinerary beforehand with Golf-Drives. We take care of your transfer needs for the whole of your golf holiday, you’ll have a friendly driver waiting for you at the airport. It doesn’t stop there, we’ll also collect you from your hotel and take you to the golf course and back to your hotel. We’ll even take you between golf courses!