The legality of electric skateboards in some parts of Africa[Are Electric Skateboards Legal in Africa], Europe, Asia, and other interesting places encourages tourists to bring their e-skates if they have one. But, if the skater needs to travel by air, that leads to a possible problem. How can they even enjoy e-skating in different countries if the airlines don’t allow the device inside the plane?
The answer is even more crucial for those who join electric skateboard contests or events[Electric Skateboard Competitions]. If they can’t bring their favorite e-skate, their performance might be affected.
There’s no specific airline law about electric skateboards yet. However, skaters can check the rules about similar items like conventional skateboards and hoverboards.
According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a traditional skateboard can be stored in either a carry-on or a checked bag. However, the passenger must ensure that the bag won’t exceed the weight limit. Additionally, TSA officers have the authority to block the item at the checkpoint.
Meanwhile, hoverboard users should personally contact their airline since there’s no solid regulation about the device yet. Hoverboards can pass through checkpoints, but there are zero guarantees regarding their access to the plane.
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What to Do Before Air Travel
To completely avoid problems before traveling by air, the skater must contact the official customer service hotline or email of the airline company. This should be done several days before the scheduled flight.
It’s not enough to read information from the TSA or popular blogs. After all, the airline has the right to ban any item despite approval from the checkpoints.
More importantly, airlines have different rules. Some skaters have positive experiences with air travel while others aren’t so lucky. So, don’t take personal claims from blogs too seriously.
After getting approval from the airline, make a screenshot or print the statement if the conversation is through email. Verbal claims are too risky since there’s no proof unless it’s recorded legally.
Don’t hesitate to ask the CS representative via hotline about the proof of approval that can be presented. Having a copy of the statement is essential just in case some authorities or crew members would disagree.
How to Bring Electric Skateboard on a Plane
The ideal way is to separate the battery and the electric skateboard for security reasons. The battery should be monitored at all times so it must be in a carry-on bag even if the board is in the checked luggage.
Additionally, an e-skate is more similar to a conventional skateboard if it doesn’t have a battery. As mentioned earlier, traditional skateboards are generally allowed in planes.
Since aircraft cabins are super-compact, electric longboards should be in checked bags for everyone’s comfort. The ones with shorter decks can be placed inside the cabin.
Regarding the spots where an electric skateboard can be positioned in the aircraft cabin, the coat closet and the overhead bin above the owner are good options. If the overhead compartment is too crowded, flight attendants can suggest another safe location.
Electric Skateboards and Public Transport
If the skater decides to travel by land through public transport, the rules of passenger vehicles like buses and trains must be checked, too. Fortunately, most buses allow new motorized skateboards as long as they’re securely stored on the overhead compartment. Meanwhile, a lot of rail transport vehicles still don’t allow portable transportation devices including e-scooters and hoverboards.