Sports

United Airlines drops fee for surfboards. In California.

Surfer dudes and dudettes take note: United Airlines has dropped the fees it charges to check your surfboard – if you’re flying direct to or from California.

Surf Sirens, by Ray Leighton. Courtesy Flickr Commons, courtesy National Library of Australia

(Photo: Surf Sirens, by Ray Leighton. Via Flickr Commons, courtesy National Library of Australia)

Noting that surfing was recently named California’s official state sport, United Airlines is no longer charging surfers traveling to or from California (only) a $150 or $200 special fee to check surfboards, wakeboards or paddleboards.

Instead, only the regular checked bag fees will apply.

United’s new policy only applies to direct flights into or out of the Golden State.

Flying with your surfboard on another airline? Here’s what it will cost:

Alaska Airlines: surfboards/paddleboards (and may other pieces of sports equipment) flies as regular checked baggage.

American Airlines:  $150 surfboards, kiteboards, waveboards, and wave skis.

Delta Air Lines: $150 USD/CAD for travel to all regions (excluding Europe and North Africa)

Hawaiian Airlines: $35 to neighbor island; $100 to other North American destinations.

JetBlue: $100.

Southwest: $75.

Have you traveled with a surfboard? Please share your tips for getting sports equipment on and off planes safely.

Alaska Airline’s new Russell Wilson plane

Football season is starting and Seattle-based Alaska Airlines has unveiled a plane bearing a fresh image of Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson.

 

The Boeing 737-800 has Wilson‘s tagline, “Dream Big. Fly High,” above the door.

In celebration of the Seahawks season opener against the Denver Broncos this Sunday, passengers flying on the plane to Denver on Friday, Sept. 7, will be treated to a tailgate party with food, a live DJ and a photo-booth. 

Better yet, during the football season, Alaska Airlines will once again be granted early boarding privileges to passengers wearing a Russell Wilson jersey (#3) on all Seattle-departing flights.

 

 

Alaska Airlines put NBA star Kevin Durant’s image on a plane

Courtesy Alaska Airlines

Basketball fans will want to keep an eye out for Alaska Airlines’ new specially decaled 737-900ER aircraft featuring the likeness of Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors.

The design is made up of more than 34 giant decal pieces and covers approximately 560 square feet across the fuselage and, according to Alaska Airlines, it took six mechanics and electrical technicians 144 hours to complete this special installation.

Courtesy Alaska Airlines

Why Durant? He teamed up with Alaska Airlines last September to support the airline’s youth and education programs in the Bay Area.

 

Icelandair celebrating Iceland’s soccer team with stopover fun

This year, Iceland became the smallest country ever to have its men’s soccer team qualify for the World Cup.

To celebrate, Icelandair, which sponsors the team, is launching a special soccer-themed version of its famed stopover program.

Passengers can apply to participate in Team Iceland Stopover: a selection of 90-minute, soccer-inspired experiences curated by members of Iceland’s men’s and women’s teams and taking place from May 29 through the end of June, 2018.

The experiences range from attending either a National Men’s or Women’s team match and hanging with midfielder Birkir Bjarnason at his favorite geothermal area to attending the June 16 party to celebrate Iceland’s World Cup match.

Anyone can apply to be part of the Team Iceland Stopover experiences, but there are limited spots. You’ll  need to be flying on Icelandair and your itinerary will need to match up with the program events. See the Icelandair website for more details.

Robots, cool art for basketfall fans at San Antonio Int’l Airport

San Antonio International Airport (SAT) is geared up to welcome an estimated 93,000 visitors to the city for NCAA Final Four.

Arriving passengers will be greeted by SAT Ambassadors, NCAA Final Four volunteer greeters and art installations by local artist Cruz Ortiz,

Ortiz’s large-scale “Come as Rivals, Leave as Friends” artwork is in Terminals A and B and features flag-waving basketball fans, clasped hands and #Friends4Ever in Ortiz’s iconic style.

“This project at the San Antonio International Airport was super cool because it gave me the chance to present work on a large scale,” Ortiz said in a statement, “This special opportunity allowed me to show people getting off planes from all over the world what the soul of San Antonio is about.”

There are also robots helping travelers find food and other amenities at the airport: