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 and other gear. That’s why getting the best ski boot bag for travel can make a world of difference towards a smooth trip.
So what makes a good boot bag? We’re talking about winter gear in snowy climes, so it should be water resistant and have compartments that allow damp ski boots to breathe. There should also be ample space for a helmet, jacket, gloves and goggles. This means a boot bag can be quite large, but if you’re going to be taking it on an airplane, it can’t be too large. A bulky bag is also a bad idea if you’re going to be carrying it about a lot.
A boot bag that can be carried as a backpack is ideal for travel but make sure that the straps are padded and adjustable. If you’re a petite woman, many roomy boot bags can be too bulky or awkward to carry on your back. We’ll show you some that are not, but if you’re at all concerned about it, you could consider duffel bags that are waterproof or large rolling duffles that come with a drop bottom to separate gear from clothes. Here are our picks of the best ski boot bags available now.
Best Ski Boot Bags for Air Travel
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 bag measures 17″ by 15″ by 14″.
Transpack TRV Pro World Traveler Boot Bag
Transpack is well known for winter gear bags, so you know what you’re getting with this boot bag that is especially designed for travel. The Transpack TRV Pro World Traveler is also a trapezoid in shape but with slightly more flexibility to expand or contract depending on how much you pack in the central compartment. The fabric is water resistant and heavy duty; able to withstand the rigors of air travel. The trademarked Isosceles Storage System design allows for a very comfortable way to carry the bag, as the weight of the boots in the side zippered compartments creates balance closer to the body as opposed to hanging outwards and away from the body.
Both the central compartment and side boot compartments close via double zippers. In fact, the central one features two openings – one as a flap on top and the other as a vertical opening down the front. An internal zippered pocket is meant for your personal items and side zippered pockets on the outer walls of the boot pockets are good for small items that you need quick access to. The boot pockets feature grommets for ventilation and drainage and the entire bottom features waterproof tarp.
In addition to well padded neoprene backpack straps, you also have a waist strap and sternum strap, so you won’t get tired carrying this back even for long periods of time. The entire system can be hidden away when it comes time to store it or check it before flying. If you need to, you also have the option of carrying it by the top rubberized handle or haul it via the padded foam front handle.
This is a 54 liter pack and available in a variety of color combinations.
High Sierra Bucket Boot Bag
For a boot bag that is designed specifically as a carry on sized bag, the High Sierra Bucket Boot Bag may not have separate compartments for your boots, but you can carry all your gear in it. It features one large top loading central compartment that will fit an adult-sized helmet, size 13 ski boots and ski clothes, a front zippered compartment for your tools, gloves and hat, and a top zippered compartment for goggles and smaller travel accessories. A side zippered mesh pocket is good for a water bottle or some quick access items. The main compartment features grommets for drainage and ventilation.
The backpack straps are padded and adjustable and there’s also a padded grab handle on the top. There is an add-a-bag strap across the back panel if you want to piggyback this pack over the handle of a wheeled bag.
The one drawback with this style of bag is that you have to pack the boots first and then pack everything else on top. This means you have to take out everything first to remove the boots.
The High Sierra Bucket Boot Bag measures 18.0″ x 14.0″ x 9.0″.
Women’s Ski Boot Bag
Transpack XTW Bag 2015
If you like the TRV Pro World Traveler above but feel like it may be too big for you, consider the Transpack XTW, a boot bag specifically made for women. It has a smaller capacity at 40 L, but it’s big enough to hold a pair of women’s boots and helmet along with other smaller gear.
While this bag is identical to the TRV Pro World Traveler in almost every aspect, there is one major difference that might eliminate it from being good as a boot bag for air travel. While the TRV has zippers to close the top of the central compartment, the women’s XTW closes via a drawstring and buckled down flap. This is less than ideal if you have to check the bag in for air travel. However, it may be just fine to use as a carry on bag, especially since it is less bulky.
Dakine Women’s Boot Bag
If a backpack is not your style, the Dakine’s Women’s Boot bag gives you a removable shoulder strap instead. You also have dual grab handles on top.
The central compartment is top loading with a zipper right across the top. This compartment is only big enough to hold a pair of adult women’s ski boots, snow pants, hats and gloves but you cannot fit a helmet as well unless the boots are a small size. A front zippered pocket is where you can store things like socks, goggles, etc.
This is the smallest bag on this list, measuring 15″ x 14″ x 9″ with a capacity of 30L. There are other pieces that come in this line of luggage, so it is not meant to be your only travel gear bag.
Ski Boot Bag with Wheels
Athalon Butterfly Wheeling Carry-on Boot Bag
Not everyone likes to haul luggage on their shoulders or back. If you’re one of those, try the Athalon Butterfly Wheeling Carry-on Boot Bag. This is also a trapezoid bag, except that there are two side by side attached boot bags, an extra accessories bag, and you have two inline skate type wheels and a monopole telescopic handle to pull the bag along. The wheels are housed in protective corner guards and you can push or pull the bag or stand it upright with the help of the pair of feet in the front. Each boot bag is for a single boot and has its own zippered opening. The exterior side zippered pockets are for a few other small accessories.
You store your helmet, hats, gloves and other accessories inside the u-shaped zippered flap opening accessories bag. This bag comes with a pair of snap buckle straps that attach to the wheeled boot bag for easy transport. When you’re flying, you detach the accessories bag and stow it under your seat, while the wheeled bag fits nicely in most overhead bins as is. If you find that it doesn’t fit that way, the two boot bag halves have a velcro strap at the bottom that when released, allow the two halves to lie flat next to each other, thus making it the bag fit.