A recent survey carried out by Cheapflights.co.uk has named three scheduled airlines the most 'ski friendly' by not charging for the carriage of winter sports equipment.
SWISS, Austrian, and Germanwings fly ski equipment free or charge while no-frills airlines charge up to £100 for a return trip.
Gregor Koncilja, SWISS's country manager for the UK and Ireland, told On The Snow: "SWISS have always offered free transportation for one set of ski equipment, in addition to checked luggage allowance, and have no intention of changing this."
No-frills airlines like easyJet and Ryanair have been adding sports baggage charges for some time now. easyJet charges £18.50 each way if you pre-book online (£37 return), otherwise it is £26 to buy at the airport (£52 return). Ryanair is even pricier, charging £40 online (£80 return) or £50 at the airport (£100 return).
A good tip is to pack two pairs skis or snowboards in one bag and it will count as 'one item' instead of two. This is well worth knowing as it can save two people up to £100 on a return flight. It's best to get your bathroom scales out and weigh your ski bag at home to avoid excess baggage charges at the airport. Note: all airlines have difference weight restrictions.
It's up to you whether you pack your ski boots in ski bags or check-in bags, just make sure size and weight restrictions are adhered to. If you find yourself faced with excess baggage charges, a good tip is to wear your ski boots on to the plane - it's better to look silly and save money, right?