Horror Stories about Traveling with Your Golf Clubs

Do you have any horror stories about traveling with your golf clubs?

Here are some of my recent ones:

1. On a personally important golf trip to Cabo San Lucas, the airline lost two of our six bags, one of which was a set of clubs. Not to be outdone, the return crew lost two sets of clubs...

2. Ten minutes before takeoff, my group heading from San Francisco to Bandon Dunes was bumped off the flight because all the clubs and bags pushed the small plane over its weight limit...

3. Last year, four of us heading to Hilton Head thought we'd save some money by flying with our clubs instead of shipping them. Well, in addition to each of us paying about $70 roundtrip to check the golf bags, we were forced to rent a large SUV -- for about $100 more per day -- to get them, our other bags, and us to the hotel.  Our "savings" was -$480.

I'm not saying you should never travel with your golf clubs, but these stories illustrate lessons I had to learn the hard way:

Number one: If misrouted clubs is going to ruin an important trip, it's worth it to ship them.

Number two: If any leg of golf trip involves a small airplane, check in super early. We didn't do this and it's why we got bounced. If you don't like wasting time in airports, again, shipping might be a better option.

Number three: If you're purely interested in the price of shipping vs. schlepping, you have to factor in the size of the rental car you may need to fit your big golf travel bags and other stuff. As I mentioned above, had we shipped, we could have rented a far less expensive car.

In case you're interested, lately, I've been very happy using a company called Ship Sticks (shipsticks.com) to ship my clubs.

They're one of the newer firms in this space, but apparently only because they spent a lot of time prepping for the party:

Their website is by far the easiest to use, and their prices -- which include an initial $1,000 of insurance -- are often lower than what you'll get by going directly to FedEx and UPS.

So, do you have any horror stories about traveling with your golf clubs? Have you found that shipping them is a better option?

Please share your comments or read what others are saying below.

Craig Better is one of the founding editors of Golf Vacation Insider. In addition to traveling to 15 foreign countries, he has twice traveled across America to play golf courses in all 50 United States. Prior to joining Golf Vacation Insider, Craig was a freelance writer who contributed to GOLF Magazine, Travel + Leisure Golf, Maxim Magazine, USAToday.com, and co-authored Zagat Survey’s book, America’s Top Golf Courses.
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Horror Stories about Traveling with Your Golf Clubs
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