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Packing tips for traveling with golf clubs?


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It looks like I’m going to be traveling with my clubs more on planes. I have a Club Glove travel bag and one of those “stiff arms” to keep the top of the bag from collapsing around the clubs. My question is what tips or advice do you have when traveling with your clubs?  Do any of you take the head off your driver to pack it away?

Thanks in advance!

Driver: :taylormade-small: Stealth2+

3W: :taylormade-small: Stealth2

4H: :taylormade-small: Stealth 2

Irons 4I-9I:  :titleist-small: T200

Wedges P, 48: :titleist-small: T200

Wedges 54, 58: :titleist-small: Vokey SM9

Putter:  :odyssey-small: O Works #1 Black

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24 minutes ago, Hacker60521 said:

It looks like I’m going to be traveling with my clubs more on planes. I have a Club Glove travel bag and one of those “stiff arms” to keep the top of the bag from collapsing around the clubs. My question is what tips or advice do you have when traveling with your clubs?  Do any of you take the head off your driver to pack it away?

Thanks in advance!

Yeah, de-heading the driver is the other thing I've done.  Be sure you remember what the settings were so you can put it back on correctly.  I have a Club Glove bag and stiff arm, and travel at least a couple of times a year with my clubs, and have never had an issue.

:titleist-small: Irons Titleist T200, AMT Red stiff

:callaway-small:Rogue SubZero, GD YS-Six X

:mizuno-small: T22 54 and 58 wedges

:mizuno-small: 7-wood

:Sub70: 5-wood

 B60 G5i putter

Right handed

Reston, Virginia

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@DaveP043 has a good point of removing the driver head prior to packing.  Just to be sure, I take a picture of the driver settings just so I have a record of where it was set.  You can wrap the head in a towel and place it in your bag.  Don't forget the wrench to put it back on when you arrive!

I've had a Club Glove travel bag for over 30 years and it's been all over the world.  The stiff arm is a great addition as it absorbs blows to the top of the travel bag.  I tend to wrap my towels around the club heads to help minimize the banging into one another during transit.  Before I got the stiff arm, I had a broom handle that I cut 1/2" longer than my driver to act in the same manner.

I also weight the full travel bag before I leave the house just to be sure it's under the weight limit.  If it's low enough, I'll add some clothes in there to help the padding and minimize the overall carryon weight.  

If you have a spare Apple AirTag, it's not a bad idea to include it in the travel bag.  It helps you track it through the process and ensure it's on the plane.  I was traveling with my clubs and had a window seat.  The "cockpit door is closed" announcement came on just as I looked down and saw my clubs on the tarmac.  I called the flight attendant over and told her my clubs were not on the plane.  She said "if we stop and it's not yours, the pilot will kill me!"  I replied "if they are my clubs, I'll kill you!"  The plane stopped, I felt the cargo doors open and the flight attendant returned with a free drink.  I know some airlines do have bad tracking capability and it will ensure it's on the plane when you are.

If I'm going to play right after you land, I'll pack some balls, tees and other small golf paraphernalia in my carry on just in case the clubs don't make it.  That way, I can rent clubs, not miss golf and pick the clubs up when they do arrive.  

I also have a smaller and lighter travel golf bag I use.  It's a little cramped compared with my cart bag.  However, it's easier to drag through the airports, into shuttles and to my destination than a bigger bag. 

Given the size and what a full travel golf bag must look like under x-rays, there's a high probability that it's going to be opened and hand searched.  Do don't be surprised if you get that TSA note in the bag. 

If your Club Glove travel bag has some miles on it, you might want to lubricate the zippers and wheels.  You don't need a deal with broken zipper and an open bag on your return trip.  In that same vein, sometimes the inside Club Glove fabric will start to fray a little and it can get caught in the zipper.  If you see the fraying, you can snip it off or use a hot flame or soldering iron to melt the plastic threads.   If you need to replace the Club Glove wheels, it's easy.  They do sell them through their website.  However, I picked up right size inline roller skate wheels (you need to measure the wheel OD and bearing ID to get the correct size) for a few dollars apiece and they work great.  The axle just unscrews with an Allen wrench.  

Make sure you put your name and phone number in your travel bag just in case it gets lost and the airline label is worn.  

Hopefully some of this will help.  Good luck and travel safe!

Ping G430 Max driver 10.5 degrees with an Alta Quick45 gram senior shaft
Callaway Epic 3 wood, Project X Evenflow Green 45 gram senior shaft  
Callaway GBB Epic Heavenwood, with a Mitsubishi Diamana 50 gram senior shaft
Ping G 20.5 degree 7 wood, with a stock Alta 65 gram senior shaft
Ping G 26 degree hybrid, stock Alta 65 gram senior shaft
Callaway Paradym X irons, 7-AW with Aldila Ascent Blue 50 graphite shafts
Edison wedges:  50, 55 and 60 degree, KBS Tour Graphite A flex shafts
Putters:  L.A.B. Direct Force 2.1 putter, 34.5" long, 67 degrees lie
 
2022 MGS Tester:  Shot Scope Pro XL+ with H4  
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I travel with clubs many times a season. The Club Glove travel bag is the best.

Always use a stiff arm. Always take your driver head off, put it in the head cover and put it in a pouch on your golf bag. Stick the driver shaft alongside the stiff arm. Move your clubs around so the stiff arm location can be in the center of your golf bag.

Move your putter location so it’s close to center as well. Weave your golf towels in and out around your irons. 
Then place your bags travel cover on. Then open the zipper enough to stuff some bubble wrap between the irons and the underside of the stiff arm.

Finally put your bag in the Club Glove, buckle up, zip up, make sure your name is located in two spots. Then off to the airport.

PS: an air tag is also a good thing to have.

 

 

:titleist-small: Driver, TSi 1 S Flex

:cobra-small: 3 wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex

:cobra-small: 5 wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex 

:cobra-small: 7 Wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex 

:cobra-small: 5 Hybrid King Tec MMT R Flex

:cobra-small: Irons, Tour UST Recoil 95 R Flex (6 - Gap)

:cobra-small: Wedges, Snakebite KBS Hi- Rev2.0 54* & 60*

:cobra-small: Agera 35"

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12 hours ago, Golf2Much said:

@DaveP043 has a good point of removing the driver head prior to packing.  Just to be sure, I take a picture of the driver settings just so I have a record of where it was set.  You can wrap the head in a towel and place it in your bag.  Don't forget the wrench to put it back on when you arrive!

Hopefully some of this will help.  Good luck and travel safe!

Wow! So much great advice. Thank you! I don’t think I would have had the nerves to tell the flight attendant that my clubs weren’t in the plane. I would have blamed it on a bad AirTag update. Wow

Driver: :taylormade-small: Stealth2+

3W: :taylormade-small: Stealth2

4H: :taylormade-small: Stealth 2

Irons 4I-9I:  :titleist-small: T200

Wedges P, 48: :titleist-small: T200

Wedges 54, 58: :titleist-small: Vokey SM9

Putter:  :odyssey-small: O Works #1 Black

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When I went to Scotland, I used an Ogio Alpha travel cover and a stiff arm, making sure I gave a couple of inches cushion between the head of my driver and the umbrella on the stiff arm. Did not remove my driver head but wrapped all my clubs in towels and bubble wrap, and they survived Delta baggage handlers on both sides of the Atlantic nicely.

image.png.0654b672205120cc3870bc2164762be5.png

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I used to have a soft sided case but I got nervous and switched to a hard case. Beside the fact that the soft sider always was messed up by the baggage handlers and one of the wheels was eventually torn off. 😠

As previously said - remove the heads where you can. <take a pic of the settings before removing>
I removed all of my wood heads, turned the shafts grip up and put them back in the bag.

Weave a towel through and around the iron heads. move your putter into the middle.

You can buy a club glove stiff arm - around 30 bucks, but I'm cheap and made my own.
image.png.9adc65f4fe25bc805adf903e49df17c9.png

Bought a couple broom handles, cut a hole in tennis balls and put them on the end. put the broom handles in the bag.

Get a tracking tag - either apple or android - and put it in the bag. If the airlines lose your clubs (hopefully not) you can show them exactly where they are.

DriverPING G425 Max
Woods- PING G 3w, Sub70 pro 4w, 
Callaway UW 19*, TourEdge C721 22* 
Irons- XXIO X

Wedges- Callaway Jaws Raw 

Putter- Cleveland HB Soft #1 w/UST
Ball- Maxfli Tour X

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2 minutes ago, StrokerAce said:

Get a tracking tag - either apple or android - and put it in the bag

Interesting. Last time I looked there wasn't a good option for Android (which I use) but I'm finding one now. Range is only 250 feet via Bluetooth, though, which may not be enough for airline purposes.

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12 minutes ago, ILMgolfnut said:

Interesting. Last time I looked there wasn't a good option for Android (which I use) but I'm finding one now. Range is only 250 feet via Bluetooth, though, which may not be enough for airline purposes.

Hmmm... didn't realize that. I see a couple at 400-500 feet but you're right, that's not going to do you much good if you're in Scotland and your clubs are in London.

DriverPING G425 Max
Woods- PING G 3w, Sub70 pro 4w, 
Callaway UW 19*, TourEdge C721 22* 
Irons- XXIO X

Wedges- Callaway Jaws Raw 

Putter- Cleveland HB Soft #1 w/UST
Ball- Maxfli Tour X

Interested in an in-depth review of  the Callaway Paradym driver? Click ➡️ here

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34 minutes ago, ILMgolfnut said:

Interesting. Last time I looked there wasn't a good option for Android (which I use) but I'm finding one now. Range is only 250 feet via Bluetooth, though, which may not be enough for airline purposes.

Range is to within ANY phone or Bluetooth device so don't worry about that. The apple air tag is only marketed as like ~30 feet range and I have one in my golf bag and it's constantly updating while at airport so I have great visibility of it. That range really only matters if you are going into rural area or someplace it's not around any phones.

JK

Driver: Callaway Rogue

3W: Callaway Rogue

Hybrid: Callaway Apex

Irons: Callaway APEX 21

Wedges: Cleveland RTX6 Zipcore

Putter: PXG Hercules 

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31 minutes ago, jkimbrell0 said:

That range really only matters if you are going into rural area

Well I'm gonna be kinda out in the middle of nowhere in Scotland in July. But I guess as long as my clubs make it to/from the Inverness airport I'll be okay. I'll definitely look into those tags. Clubs will be my checked luggage; I'm renting a cottage with a washing machine so I can get away with a carry-on bag for clothes for a week (or half a week).

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I have a Club Glove Burstproof II (what they call the collegiate now) with a stiff arm. I do take the heads off of any adjustable clubs then put the shafts down with the grips up, and pack a towel around everything. I carry my rangefinder and gps watch with me on the plane and pack whatever else I might need, shoes, extra towels and such, in the travel bag being mindful of weight which I try to keep under 40lbs. Recently I have thrown in an Airtag along with taking pictures of my clubs being taken for just in case issues.

Driver: Ping G430 SFT 10.5

Fairway Woods: Ping SFT G425 3-5-7

Irons;    Ping 425 4-LW

Putter:  Ping Sigma2 Anser Platinum

             Odyssey Tour#1 White Hot 

Ball:      Titleist Tour Speed

Bag:      Titleist

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51 minutes ago, ILMgolfnut said:

Well I'm gonna be kinda out in the middle of nowhere in Scotland in July. But I guess as long as my clubs make it to/from the Inverness airport I'll be okay. I'll definitely look into those tags. Clubs will be my checked luggage; I'm renting a cottage with a washing machine so I can get away with a carry-on bag for clothes for a week (or half a week).

Chances of airline losing the bag or sending it to wrong city is exponentially greater than you misplacing bag once you're already Scotland. So really just a way to prove to airlines that it is in their system IF it gets lost or save you time in baggage claim if it's at the airport but in a different oversized baggage area or something like that. Sounds like a great trip so if you're worried I'll personally carry your bags over there if you pay airfare and boarding 😉

JK

Driver: Callaway Rogue

3W: Callaway Rogue

Hybrid: Callaway Apex

Irons: Callaway APEX 21

Wedges: Cleveland RTX6 Zipcore

Putter: PXG Hercules 

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On 2/1/2024 at 12:01 PM, DaveP043 said:

Yeah, de-heading the driver is the other thing I've done.  Be sure you remember what the settings were so you can put it back on correctly.  I have a Club Glove bag and stiff arm, and travel at least a couple of times a year with my clubs, and have never had an issue.

I’ve been traveling with a Club Glove for over 20 years. It’s been rebuilt a couple times (CG won’t replace zippers anymore, so had to find a shop for that) but I also have never had an issue. Added a Stiff Arm once that became a thing, and all the advice everyone has given is good advice. I also have an Apple Tag in my golf bag now. Safe travels; play well & have fun!!

Edited by MGoBlue100

"Where'd it go?"  "Right in the Lumberyard..."

126422322_PXGLogo_2.png.74a339363ba3931cc4fc226a253621f8.png Gen 2  0811 XF 10.5*  Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6x 
:bridgestone-small:  Tour B JGR 15*   Fairway UST ProForce V2 7F5 76g X-Flex
:bridgestone-small:  Tour B JGR 19* & 22* Hybrid UST ProForce V2 90g X-Flex
:bridgestone-small:  Tour B JGR HF-2 irons (5i - PW)  KBS Tour 130x

:cleveland-small: CBX Wedges (50, 54, 58)  TT Dynamic Gold 115 Wedge Shaft
MATI  Mamo Putter 33"  Super Stroke Football League 3.0 Slim
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As a side note, airlines will replace damaged equipment if you use a hard case. Unfortunately traveling with a hard case is a chore. Tough to get into rental vehicles unless you rent a minivan or large SUV. Tough to move around the airports.

I had the airlines break three hard cases in one year. They claim that the turns in the conveyor systems are too tight for hard cases. Each time they wrote me a check for a replacement. (I learned to keep the receipt in my golf bag) I picked up parts and repaired them myself. Eventually I had enough of their money for the club glove pro. That one has gone three years now with no issues. Probably about 16 flights per season. Still going strong.

:titleist-small: Driver, TSi 1 S Flex

:cobra-small: 3 wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex

:cobra-small: 5 wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex 

:cobra-small: 7 Wood, Aerojet Max UST Helium Nanocore R Flex 

:cobra-small: 5 Hybrid King Tec MMT R Flex

:cobra-small: Irons, Tour UST Recoil 95 R Flex (6 - Gap)

:cobra-small: Wedges, Snakebite KBS Hi- Rev2.0 54* & 60*

:cobra-small: Agera 35"

image.png Ultralight 14-way Cart Bag

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1 hour ago, jkimbrell0 said:

Chances of airline losing the bag or sending it to wrong city is exponentially greater than you misplacing bag once you're already Scotland

Agreed. Especially going through the zoo known as Heathrow. I have determined, however, that my flight from the US will come to Terminal 5, as will my outgoing flight to Inverness. Keeping everything in one terminal greatly reduces the chances that BA will send my sticks to Bangalore or something.

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7 minutes ago, Tom the Golf Nut said:

Unfortunately traveling with a hard case is a chore. Tough to get into rental vehicles unless you rent a minivan or large SUV. Tough to move around the airports.

Yep, yep and yep.

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3 hours ago, jkimbrell0 said:

Sounds like a great trip so if you're worried I'll personally carry your bags over there if you pay airfare and boarding

Not gonna go that far, but if any Spies decide to show up between July 5-13, I'll get you on at Fortrose for 25 pounds (regular summer rate is 95). But you gotta play with me. You're on your own to get there.

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I just took my first golf trip, and chose to buy an SKB hard case, instead of the Club Glove that everyone seems to have. As an airline employee, I spend a ton of time obsessing over luggage (it gets used frequently), and tend to be a bit "extra".

Two main reasons I went hard case:

  • Some airlines will not cover damage to soft cases, or to anything contained inside of them. One even has you sign a waiver (or, the employees are supposed to, anyways). I don't care so much about my current clubs, but eventually I'll have nice clubs and don't want to buy two cases.
  • Having seen baggage sorting rooms first hand... no way I ever put anything soft sided through them. Loose straps can easily be caught, and then your bag sits there and gets sanded down until an overworked and underpaid employee notices. If you're lucky, maybe some cosmetic damage. If you're very unlucky, there goes your travel bag, your golf bag, and maybe even a club or two. And as mentioned, the airlines won't pay you a cent.

As far as the SKB is concerned... the latches are top notch. The wheels are not. It's fairly heavy (18lbs) but my Vessel Cart bag, clubs, shoes, balls, etc weighed in at 53 pounds. If your weight limit is 50, one can easily move balls and shoes to make weight. I do also put a stiff arm in there, to brace the cart bag inside of the travel case, should (when?) any rough handling occur.

Driver: Kirkland Signature

3wood: Callaway Edge

5w: Stealth2 HD 

Irons: Callaway Edge

Wedges: Kirkland Signature

Putter: Odyssey White Hot

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