If you’re going on a skiing holiday you’re probably carrying a lot more than usual to your trip destination. Not only do you still have all your usual clothes, accessories and gadgets to take, but you also need ski boots, helmet, jacket, goggles and other gear. That’s why getting the best ski boot bag for travel can make a world of difference towards a smooth trip.
If you’re traveling by car, coach or train to your ski or snowboarding destination, you don’t have to worry about losing your gear so your bag can be large enough to carry your boots, jacket, helmet and goggles. Some boot bags come with a way to attach your ski bag to make hauling all that gear easier. If you’re flying, you’ll have to think more carefully about how you transfer everything. Although you can rent snow boots, that’s not ideal, so the best ski boot carrier in this case should make it through the journey with all your gear intact.
We’ll first describe the various types of boot bags and then review a few of the best ski boot bags available of each type.
Top Ski Boot Bags
|Best Ski Boot Bag for Carry On|
Wildhorn Brimhall Ski Boot Bag
Element Equipment Boot Bag Deluxe
|Best ski boot bag for checked luggage|
Kulkea Boot Trekker
OutdoorMaster Polar Bear Boot Bag
Ski Boot and Helmet Bag Buying Guide
Here are the important features to look out for in a ski boot travel case:
If you’re going to fly and need to check the bag in, then it’s best to get a bag with hideaway straps, so that they don’t catch in the conveyor belt and rip away.
Types of Ski Boot Bags
Trapezoidal Ski boot and helmet backpack: A boot bag that can be carried as a backpack is ideal for walking to your lodge, hiking to your next piste or just waiting for your shuttle or ski lift. Most ski boot backpacks are trapezoidal bags, as they are about as wide as they are tall to accommodate the boots and other bulky gear and to keep the pack balanced on your back. The best way to carry ski boots is to pack each one in separate compartments on either side of the main compartment where you store your jacket, gloves and helmet. This way the boots won’t dig into your back. Make sure that the straps are padded and adjustable.
This bag suits short people because you’re not stacking bulky items one on top of another and making the bag too tall for comfort.
Tall stacked ski boot backpack: Because most trapezoidal bags don’t conform to airline carry on dimensions, you may have to consider a different kind of bag if you want to take them with you on the plane. You can get either a vertical style of backpack or even a smaller boot bag that can’t fit a helmet inside but allows you to attach it on the outside. Unless you have small feet to accommodate a small sized helmet inside as well, most airlines will allow you to attach a helmet to the outside of a small boot bag and you can unclip it in the plane and stow the bag in the overhead bin and the helmet under the seat in front of you.
This bag is preferred by those around you because you’re less likely to knock something over when you turn or get stuck in a narrow doorway! However, it requires a top down approach to unpacking so that it won’t collapse when you take out the boots, which are usually stored right at the bottom and in the center.
Ski boot bag with wheels: Not everyone can carry such bulky gear on their backs or shoulders. If you’re going to check your bag for air travel or you just need to transport your gear from your car to the lodge, then a rolling boot bag is fine.
Heated boot bag: This is the ultimate luxury. This kind includes an inbuilt controller with a mechanism to keep your boots warm inside the bag until you’re ready to wear them.
Now that you know what kind of boot bags are available and their various features, let’s get to our ski boot bag reviews.
Best Ski Boot Backpack – Trapezoidal Style
Athalon Everything Boot Pack
The Athalon Everything Boot Pack is in a classic trapezoid shape and its customers rave about the spacious compartments and high quality. It features separate side zipped compartments that are ventilated for your boots. The center section will hold a helmet with gloves, goggles, lunch box, etc., and its opening is zipped and U-shaped for easy access to the inside. There are clips inside for keys, or other small accessories that frequently get lost inside large compartments like this.
All the main storage compartments feature double zippers, so you can lock them if you have to check in the bag when flying. There is a small single zippered pocket on the lid of the central section where you can store small accessories or an MP3 player. This pocket even has a earphone port. A bungee cord sits right below, which is ideal for your jacket.
There are two strong grab handles if you need to tote the bag along – one on top and one on the front. Two padded and adjustable backpack straps allow you to carry the bag easily for longer periods and these can be hidden away at the back if you plan to check the bag in to prevent them from being torn during baggage handling. For added carrying comfort, there are four padded lumbar pads on the back panel.
You can be assured that all your gear will be dry in this water resistant polyester bag, as it has drainage grommets in spots and the bottom is made of waterproofed tarp.
This ski boot and helmet backpack measures 17″ by 15″ by 14″, weighs 3.8 lbs and fits upto size 13 men’s boots in its 58.5 liter capacity. It will fit in an overhead bin only if you wear a small size boot and don’t pack it full.
There’s also a new and improved version called the Athalon Everything Plus that comes with sternum straps to help keep the bag stabilized and its shoulder straps from slipping off, and the back panels have extra thick padding with better lumbar support. There’s also a hidden helmet sling that lets you store your helmet securely outside the pack to give you extra interior packing space if you need it.
OutdoorMaster Polar Bear Boot Bag
For a good budget option, the OutdoorMaster Polar Bear Boot Bag gets our vote. This nylon bag measures 16.9 x 13.8 x 15.7 inches and weighs 2.8 lbs. Its capacity is 50L.
You can carry it using any of the two ergonomic carrying handles or as a backpack with the adjustable shoulder straps that you can stow away in their own pocket when you need them out of the way. When you want to set it down somewhere, there are non-slip feet on the bottom to keep the bag clean and dry.
The bag is very roomy with two double zipper side pockets for any size boots. These pockets have bottom and side ventilation grommets to keep the boots dry. The outside of these pockets feature quick access zippered pockets. The large middle compartment is where you can store your helmet, gloves and other ski gear. There’s a zippered pocket inside to hold any damp items separately. This compartment opens via a top loading double zipper flap and there’s another quick stash zippered pocket on top of this. There is also an adjustable bungee cord on the front of the flap that’s good for holding a snow parka.
While the bottom is thick and waterproof, there is no padding anywhere in the bag, but that’s not a deal breaker for such an inexpensive bag that’s durable and spacious.
Element Equipment Boot Bag Deluxe Snowboard Ski Backpack
The Element Equipment Boot Bag Deluxe Snowboard Ski Backpack is quite similar to the Outdoor Master Polar Bear above, but has a few really nice extra features if you don’t mind spending just a few dollars more.
This bag is made of 600D Oxford PVC Coated Polyester and is water resistant and tough with double stitching and reinforced seams. It fits up to men’s size 14 boots and is 17″ tall, 15″ wide and 15″ deep and weighs 2.8 lbs.
There are two sturdy padded carry handles – one on the front and one on the top of the bag. The easiest way to carry it is by its nicely padded shoulder straps that are detachable from the bottom so that you can stash them away it their dedicated zippered pocket at the back. The back of the bag is well padded for extra comfort. There are little feet on the bottom of the bag to prevent it from getting wet when you set it down somewhere. There is padding on the bottom of the bag.
There are two side zippered compartments, one for each ski or snowboarding boot and they have drainage holes to dry out wet boots and prevent them from smelling. The large main compartment can hold your helmet, gloves, snow pants, balaclava, etc., and there’s a nicely sized fleece lined goggles pocket inside to keep one or two pairs of goggles protected and scratch-free. There are other various pockets to help keep smaller items organized.
There is a clear zippered pocket on the inside of the compartment’s top flap to separate damp items and a zippered pocket on the outside of the flap for things like your lift pass, chapstick and keys. An adjustable bungee cord on the front exterior is perfect for a snow jacket or water bottle. The exterior of one boot compartment had a zippered pocket that you can use for miscellaneous little things, while the exterior of the other one has a clear card holder for your name tag.
Best Ski Boot Carry On Bag
Can a ski boot bag be a carry on? Yes it can as the following bags show! You will need to be careful not to stuff them full so that they can actually fit into overhead plane compartments and in some cases. If not, you may need to carry your helmet on the outside of the pack and stow it separately in the overhead bin.
Wildhorn Brimhall Ski Boot Bag
Wildhorn Outfitters supplies gear to the U.S. ski and snowboard teams so you know you’re getting a well designed piece here. The Wildhorn Brimhall Ski Boot Bag is designed to be packed and carried like a regular piece of softsided luggage where there’s a main compartment that opens like a suitcase and is divided into two sections. Your gear won’t move around in this bag and everything is protected from damage even if baggage handlers throw the bag around.
There are three ways to carry this bag. The padded and adjustable backpack straps with sternum strap provide the easiest way and they are detachable from the bottom so that they can be stashed away in their own zippable pocket if you need to check the bag before flying. There are two sturdy luggage-style padded grab handles on one side and the top of the bag, and there’s even a removable shoulder strap with adjustable pad if you want to tote it on one shoulder.
This bas is lightweight at just 2.7 lbs and the dimensions are 14 x 13 x 19 inches. It can hold upto size 13 in men’s boots and is designed to fit in the overhead bin of a plane. It is made of durable water resistant nylon with nylon lining.
It opens like a clam via a zipper to reveal two equal sections for packing. The left section, which is closest to your back, is for your ski boots and it has a removable bendable divider so that you can place your boots and use the divider to separate them and keep them in place. There are grommet holes in the bottom to allow water to drain from wet boots and allow air to circulate. There’s a zippered panel to secure the boots and the outside of the panel has a stretchable mesh sleeve that can hold a jacket.
The right hand section is divided into 4 separate compartments and each has a zippered stretchable mesh cover to make sure everything stays organized. All the compartments are padded but the smallest compartment in the middle has extra thick padding to protect your goggles and it’s big enough to hold an extra pair of night goggles. The other compartment in the middle is good for gloves, balaclava and socks. The two large outer compartments are meant for a helmet and other ski apparel, like snow pants.
There is an outside zippered compartment on the front that can be used for your snow parka or damp items.
The great thing about this boot bag is that you can also use it like regular luggage when you’re taking a trip that’s not to the slopes. It doesn’t look like a boot bag so it’s very versatile. You can remove the boot divider and use that section for packing clothes, while the other section can be used to pack underwear, toiletries and accessories while keeping everything neat and tidy.
Transpack TRV Ballistic Pro Boot Bag
The very TRV Pro is popular amongst regular skiers and now the Transpack TRV Ballistic Pro Boot Bag is an updated step with an increased capacity while keeping the best features from the old model. This is the toughest of all the bags in this list and the only one in the trapezoidal shape that’s TSA approved for carry on. However, it’s not likely to pass through gate check if it is stuffed full. It is a 59L bag and accordion-like, so it expands as you pack more into it.
It is made of super durable and water resistant coated 1680 ballistic nylon and ripstop polyester so you know it will withstand rough treatment by baggage handlers. The contoured backpack straps are nicely padded and adjustable and come with sternum and waist straps for stabilization and load balancing. All these can be stowed away in their dedicated pocket at the back. The back panel on the bag is close cell foam padded. There’s a comfort grip rubber top handle and front padded handle as well.
There are two side zippered compartments with water drainage grommets to pack your boots in and each of them have a smaller zippered pocket on their faces. The main center compartment can be accessed in two ways – a front vertical zipper opening and a top u-shaped double zippered panel. This compartment is water resistant so nothing inside will get wet. It can hold a helmet, jacket, gloves, pants and more. Your smaller accessories can be stored in the zippered pocket inside. On top of the opening panel is a protected goggle pocket.
All the double zippers feature long corded pulls and are lockable with your own luggage locks.
Sportube Overheader Boot Bag
The Sportube Overheader Boot Bag is one of the best ski boot bags for air travel as it will fit into an overhead compartment with the way it is designed. It is also versatile enough to be used as a regular carry on travel backpack.
It comes with a detachable helmet sling so that the actual bag is small enough for carry on and only needs to be packed with your other gear. In the plane, you can remove the helmet to store under the seat in front of you, while the bag can be stored in the overhead bin. Its dimensions are 22″ x 14″ x 4″ when empty. You can fit size 11 boots for men or size 12 for women in the main compartment but any larger and you’re out of luck. The material used is 840D polyester ballistic fabric.
There are two compartments on this boot bag and both are front panel loading via dual zippers, but the front compartment can also be accessed from inside the main compartment which opens fully to lie both compartments flat for packing. The front compartment is separated from the other by a zippered fabric panel and you pack your gloves, snow pants and other snow accessories here. The main compartment is padded and meant for the boots and there’s a pair of restraining straps to keep them snugly packed.
There are two external zippered pockets on the front of the bag, one below the other, and the larger one is padded and good for carrying a tablet. There are two zippered pouches on one side of the pack, a quick stash zippered pocket on the top, and a stretch top mesh water bottle pocket on the other side.
The backpack straps are padded and contoured and there’s a sternum strap and detachable waist strap to give you a very comfortable way to carry it. There’s a top carry handle as well. If you’re also traveling with another wheeled Sportube bag, like the ski case, then you can hitch this bag to it to give your shoulders a rest.
Unigear Ski Boot Bag
Looking for an airline carry on ski boot bag that can also haul your skis and other gear? Look no farther than the Unigear Ski Boot Bag. It measures 11.8 x 12.6 x 19.7 inches, weighs 2 lbs, has a capacity of 50L and can hold ski boots up to size 12 US men’s. Although you can pack quite a lot in it, you have to find the correct angle to push it into an overhead bin on a plane.
All of the compartments in this bag are separated internally from each other and have their own access points. The boot compartment is accessed via a u-shaped panel from the back that also acts as a mat for you to stand on while you change from boots to shoes and back. The compartment on top of that with its own top access zippered lid is just big enough for a helmet and goggles, although there is no protective pocket or lining for the goggles. Another compartment in the front is big enough for a light jacket or your snow pants. It also has a zippered pocket on the inside of the flap for small accessories. Finally, there’s front exterior velcro flap pocket for anything you need quick access to.
The compartments are not the only features to haul your gear. You can attach skis and poles to the sides of the bag using the adjustable locking straps or you can use them to strap a snowboard to the front.
There are two ways to carry this bag. You can use the padded adjustable backpack straps with sternum strap or you can carry the bag using the top webbed handle. All straps feature reinforced stitching. The back panel is EVA foam padded so that the ski boots don’t dig into your back.
The shell of the bag is made of 1050D nylon, while the bottom is made of waterproof tarpaulin. However, there are no drainage holes for the boot compartment and no feet to protect the bottom of the bag.
OutdoorMaster Ski Boot Bag Lynx
For another type of storage and access design check out the OutdoorMaster Ski Boot Bag Lynx. It is the most inexpensive bag on this list. This is also a vertical type of backpack but it has two access points.
The bag is made of water and scratch resistant nylon with a reinforced waterproof bottom. It measures 20 x 13.7 x 10.6, weighs 1.8 lbs and has a capacity of 50L.
The shoulder straps are wide and adjustable, however they cannot be stowed away if you want to check the bag for air travel. There are two carry handles – one on the front and one on the top.
This bag is designed to separate your gear. The main compartment opens via a zippered flap from the back and you can store your boots, ski pants, etc. in here. There’s a top compartment that opens via a zippered flap for your helmet. A front u-shaped zippered compartment is ideal for ski gloves and goggles, and the front-most zippered pocket is good for quick access to small essentials. There’s also 1 side pocket with velcro fastening flap on either side of the main compartment.
There are no grommets for drainage on this bag but considering the price and the fact that it is lightweight with a streamlined footprint, that’s not a big deal.
Large Ski Boot Bag
Thule RoundTrip Boot Backpack 60L
The first of the large boot bags in our list is the 60L Thule RoundTrip Boot Backpack. Its design concept is very similar to the Unigear Boot Bag above, but this has a larger capacity and can hold large ski boots. It’s not only designed to carry your protective snow gear, but it also integrates well with other equipment or bags that you would normally carry for a trip to the mountains.
This bag measures 14.2 x 14.2 x 22.8 in, weighs 2.75 lb and has a capacity of 60 L. It’s made of 600D polyester and water resistant with grommet holes in the boot compartment to let water out.
The boots go into the main compartment that loads from the rear via a zippered panel that when opened lies flat on the ground like a mat to allow you to stand on it and change in and out of your boots even in the snow.
You can efficiently pack the bag with your helmet and outerwear because it has two way access from the top as well as front via zippered flaps. Two spacious side pockets are perfect for your gloves and other accessories. At the very top is a protected zippered pocket for your goggles and sunglasses.
There are built-in attachment loops that allow you to quickly connect the bag to a Thule Ski or Snowboard Bag for easier transport. The external lash webbing is designed to also carry your snowboard or skis and poles on either side of the bag.
All of this gear needs strong handles and straps to carry it and that’s what you have here. There are are padded adjustable backpacks straps with sternum strap for really comfortable carry and there are multiple sturdy padded grab handles.
There is no structure to this soft-sided bag so if you remove the boots first it will topple over or collapse on itself. It’s not a big deal if you just unpack from the top first.
KULKEA Boot Trekker
The 70L KULKEA Boot Trekker is full of well thought out features and is technically designed for regular skiers and snowboarders along with with comfort carry design elements as well.
The padded and adjustable S-shaped shoulder straps are very comfortable. They include heavily reinforced lifter straps and an adjustable sternum strap for extra stability. The waist straps help distribute some of the weight to your hips. A wide padded top handle is easy to grab and go. The EVA molded back panel is very comfortable as well.
This durable and water-resistant nylon and polyester bag features PVC free tarpaulin on the bottom and sides with drainage grommet holes and bumper corner protection for added protection. It measures 18″H x14.5″L x 18″W, weighs 4 lbs, and can carry US men’s size 13 boots.
The boots go in the two side compartments that open via double zippers. There are air vents on each for proper ventilation. The main compartment is in the center and top loading and it is extremely room. It can carry a helmet, jacket, pants, tops and gloves. A roomy zippered pocket right on top of the opening flap is fleece lined and good for goggles and balaclava. A front zippered compartment has drop pockets for your lunch and water and there’s a transparent zippered pocket on the inside of the flap for your personal items. There’s a small zippered pocket right on the front for any small items you need easy access to.
If you want to let your helmet air out or just need more space in the main compartment, there’s a retractable helmet sling that comes out from under the front compartment and hooks to the top front of the bag. There’s also daisy chain loops if you want to attach any gear to the front.
Women’s Ski Boot Bag
KULKEA Powder Trekker
The 52L KULKEA Powder Trekker is the companion to the Kulkea Boot Trekker above. It is full featured and is technically designed for women’s frames so that it is comfortable even for petite women to carry.
The padded and adjustable shoulder straps are more contoured and set a little closer together than on the larger Trekker to accommodate narrow shouldered frames. The top handle and adjustable sternum strap are there but not the waist strap. The EVA molded back panel is present
The construction of the Powder Trekker is the same. It measures 15.5″H x 13″L x 16″W, weighs 2.5 lbs, and can carry US women’s size 11.5 boots or men’s size 10.5.
All the compartments for boots, helmet, jacket, gloves and goggles are the same except that the smallest zippered front pocket is absent. The helmet sling and daisy chain are the same too.
Best Heated Ski Boot Bag Reviews
KULKEA Thermal Trekker
If your trip involves consecutive days of skiing or snowboarding then you may find that your boots don’t have enough time to dry naturally in between or that they feel so stiff that they’re hard to get on the next day. It’s also nice to be able to put your feet into warm and toasty boots on a cold day. That’s where a heated boot bag is quite useful.
The KULKEA Thermal Trekker keeps all the best features of the Kulkea Trekker above and adds a boot warmer pad on either side of each boot in the two insulated boot side compartments.
The boot compartments each fit a ski boot up to US shoe men’s 13 and women’s 14 in the 62L volume capacity. The bag’s dimensions are 18″H x 14.5″L x 20″W.
There is a controller with 3 heat settings, Low, Medium & High, to go upto a maximum temperature of 140F. You choose the setting depending on how fast or slow you need to dry the boots. If you want to plug it in overnight, then the low setting is fine. The dual plug consists of a 120V wall plug and a 12V automobile plug so you can warm the boots in your lodge room or in your car. You will need an 120 to 220V adaptor to use the wall plug in North America.
Best Wheeled Ski Boot Bag
Sportube Cabin Cruiser
It’s understandable if you just can’t carry a bulky ski boot bag on your back or haul it over long distances by just grab handles. That’s where the Sportube Cabin Cruiser comes in. Not only can you wheel this bag along, it also conforms to cabin hand luggage requirements.
This bag is almost exactly the same as the Sportube Overheader Boot Bag above except that instead of backpack straps you have a telescopic handle and two inline skate wheels for transportation.
It is a 41L bag and will fit a pair of size 11 US men’s boots.
Best Ski Boot Bag for Kids
KULKEA Speed Star Kids Ski Boot Bag
If it’s time for your kid to carry his or her own boot bag, the KULKEA Speed Star Kids Ski Boot Bag is a good choice and is essentially a mini version of the adult-sized Trekker. It is roomy but not bulky and ideal for a growing child.
It is durable and water resistant and made of a combination of polyurethane, polyester and tarpaulin. It measures 14″H x 12.5″L x 15.5″W with a capacity of 35L and weighs just 1.3 lbs. Women’s size 9 and men’s size 8 boots will fit in the two side compartments
There are a few differences between this and the Kulkea Boot Trekker other than the size. The first major one is that there are no sternum, waist straps or lifter straps. In terms of storage, the center compartment where the helmet and other gear goes does not have the clear zippered pocket on the inside of the lid but there is a zippered pocket hanging from the top inside. There is no separate goggles pocket on the top of this bag and no small quick stash pocket on the front. The final difference is that there’s no helmet sling if you want to make more space for other gear inside the bag. However, this bag is very roomy and packing the helmet inside the main compartment won’t take away space for all the rest of the necessary gear.