Traveling with skis is a pain. Take it from me. I’ve made a cross country move four times in the past four years, resort-hopped across the Alps, and done multiple road trips carrying my gear when traveling with my college ski team and powder chasing on my own. My skis are some of my most prized possessions, so when I’m traveling, I want to make sure my equipment is taken care of to the utmost degree, which in my head, often meant having them on my person at all times.

Can I carry a ski bag, a backpack, a suitcase and other miscellaneous items such as my boots or a duffel bag around an airport? Yes. But is it something I enjoy that leaves me feeling calm and relaxed before my flight, or saves me time when I’m running late? No. In fact, I nearly missed an international flight out of Milan this Christmas because of my ski bag.

When I was traveling back and forth between my hometown in Southeast, Michigan to my college home in Eugene, Oregon, figuring out how to transport four pairs of skis was always a challenge. Shipping heavy race skis is not cheap, particularly when shipping across the country. Putting them on the roof of my car when moving also proved to be a hassle. I ran the risk of rusting my edges and bindings if I got lazy and didn’t want to bring four pairs of skis into whoever’s house I was crashing at that night. Not to mention the dirt and grime that built up over days of travel on wet, snowy roads. 2,500 miles on the road was tougher on my equipment than it was on me.

Recently, I decided to move back out west to Salt Lake City. Given my history traveling with skis, I swore to make the trip easier on myself, and my equipment. Enter, an up and coming company designed to fix all of the problems I have experienced when traveling with skis in my days of baggage naivety.

Ship Skis aims to make getting from point A to point B hassle-free, and cheaper than the conventional methods available (i.e. a ski rack, via bag check, UPS shipping, etc.). Whether you’re traveling, moving, or commuting with skis, snowboards, or luggage, Ship Skis simplifies the process for you.

Using was so simple, I didn’t have to think about it.

First, I scheduled my shipment online and told Ship Skis where I would like them picked up, and where I would like them dropped off. Ship Skis offers complimentary pick up from your origin address, but I chose to drop my bag off at my local shipping center.

Next, I printed my label and attached it to my bag with a luggage tag. All I needed was a zip-tie.

Then I packed my skis up like I normally would – in my ski bag, with as many coats as I wanted to provide some cushion, my poles, and some miscellaneous equipment. I dropped my bag off at my local shipping center and the day I showed up to my new house in Salt Lake City, my skis were already there waiting for me, following through on their promise of an on-time guarantee. No special packing required. No rooftop road-trip rust. No damaged bases or edges. No dent in my bank account. No stress.

Looking back at all of my traveling mishaps that almost always involved my skis, I could think of a multitude of ways that Ship Skis would have made my life easier had I just known of their existence.

Save money on baggage at the airport.

Checking skis is an easy way to get slammed with fees at the airport, especially if you’re traveling with multiple pairs of heavy race skis. The size of your bag, how much it weighs, and what that does to the cost of the said bag is inconsistent across the board. With Ship Skis, there are no oversized baggage fees, no dragging your bag through the airport, no transfer to your next airline to deal with. No sweat, literally.

No unexpected shipping costs.

Once I tried to avoid the airport hassle by shipping my skis to Oregon through UPS, which required me to put my skis in a box with bubble wrap and other packing essentials that could have been avoided if they would have just taken my skis in my bag. Finding a box that would fit my skis was a pain, and the process was overpriced to the point where I might as well have flown with them. Ship Skis can give you a quote upfront, so you know what you’re getting into. And they can ship directly to and from a house, business, or resort.

One less thing I have to worry about.

I went through a phase where I had a ski bag with no wheels. As someone who prefers to travel with backpacks and duffle bags rather than roller suitcases, I had to put in some work if I wanted to get anywhere. And as a racer, sometimes I’m traveling with more than one bag’s worth of skis. Add in a pair of powder skis and the rest of my equipment, and that’s a lot of extra weight, not to mention bulk. Knowing my skis would be where I needed them to be, without all that extra effort would have been a dream.

Pain-free travel.

Ski racers get injured. Not only have I had three knee surgeries, but I’ve also torn two discs in my spine, dislocated a hip, and am overdue for shoulder surgery to repair a loose ball and socket joint that tends to hyper-extend when overworked. Not having to lug around skis with me on my travels would not only have been easier on me mentally but also physically. Ship Skis does all the heavy lifting for me.

Security of my skis.

As I mentioned before, I’m a bit possessive when it comes to my gear. I’ve always been hesitant to use shipping services out of fear that my skis wouldn’t be returned to me in the condition I left them. Ship Skis’ on-time guarantee, $500 complimentary insurance, real-time tracking updates, and seven-day customer service gave me the confidence I needed to trust shipping companies again.

All in all, I would 10 out of 10 recommend Ship Skis service to any avid skier or snowboarder. Whether you’re a racer, an ex-racer, a powder hound, or an on-piste specialist, Ship Skis can get your gear where you are, without you having to put in the extra work. On race day, you want to be focused and well rested. On vacation, you want to enjoy the slopes and yourself. Why not opt to take one more thing off your plate, one more load off your shoulders?

Ship Skis has officially become my go-to service for my ski and luggage transportation and if you can relate to any of my travel faux-pas’, go ahead and see for yourself if Ship Skis is the right move for you and your plans. You won’t be disappointed.

Associate Editor – Born and raised in Metro-Detroit, Michigan, Mackenzie grew up ski racing all over the Mitten.​ She moved out west in search of mountains and attended the University of Oregon, where she achieved degrees in Journalism and Environmental Science. She raced USCSA and was captain of the UO Alpine Ski Team. She currently resides in Salt Lake City and serves as Associate Editor for Ski Racing Media.