Airline Fees Wiping Out Surfers

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 22, 2008 1:00 PM CDT
A man carries his surfboard on his way to go surfing in Lima, Friday, April 13, 2007.    (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)
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(Newser) – Surfers may be a laid-back lot, but they're riding a wave of anger at airlines that have begun charging upwards of $150 to check their boards, the LA Times reports. It's a gnarlier price hike than those levied on any other kind of sporting equipment, surfers note, calling for boycotts on the worst offenders. On international flights, fees run as high as $300 a board—and surfers often travel with several.

“Why are we being singled out,” asked one surfer. “It's not like we're carrying nuclear weapons, and these surfboards aren't much heavier than a carry-on.” Delta says boards are treated differently because they require special care and handling. But the fees are forcing many surfers to stay home. “Most of these guy don’t have money,” said one board maker. “They don’t stay in fancy resorts. They go to catch a wave and camp.”