When you take a trip, you must keep all your equipment tidy and well-organized, especially when you’re taking a ski trip. Your ski jacket, pants, gloves, beanies, skis, snowboard … there are so many things to carry! If you already have a good case for your skis, it’s time to choose a reliable ski boot bag.
These bags will allow you to conveniently store your snowboard boots or ski boots while protecting them from bumps and scratches. Many models are on the market, so first you need to carefully think about your needs. Some models are compact, others have room for two pairs of boots, and others have room for storing all your ski gear.
In this article, I’m going to explain the most important characteristics to consider before choosing your bag. In addition, I’ll review the best models of the year.
THE BEST SKI BOOT BAGS
KULKEA BOOT TREKKER
MATERIAL: Nylon, polyester and tarpaulin
SIZE: 70 L
WEIGHT: N / A
FEATURES: Dimensions 18 x 18 x 14.5 in. Plenty of pockets and compartments.
The Kulkea Boot Trekker is a full-featured bag with tons of storage options. This 70-liter model has room for your boots, a helmet, a jacket, a pair of pants, and more. It’s equipped with a wide variety of pockets and compartments, so that you can keep everything perfectly organized. You can attach your helmet outside via a deployable helmet sling. The tarpaulin bottom provides great water resistance.
Advantages: Other models feature padded back panels and padded straps, but they don’t come close to the padding quality of this bag. The shoulder straps are super thick to provide maximum comfort. It has an excellent overall performance, which makes it one of the best options of the year.
Disadvantages: It’s a little higher priced than similar bags on the list.
MATERIAL: Polyester and nylon
SIZE: 58 L
WEIGHT: 3.8 lbs
PADDING: Lumbar pads
FEATURES: Dimensions 17 x 15 x 14 in. It can store boots up to size 13 US. Pockets with ventilation and a drainage system.
The Athalon Everything features an efficient design that allows you to comfortably transport much of your ski equipment. This model has a top handle, a front padded grip handle, and two hidden padded shoulder straps so you can turn the bag into a backpack.
The bottom is totally waterproof to keep your gear dry, while the vents and grommets allow for air circulation and drain away the snow. With a capacity of almost 60 liters, it has room for a pair of boots, a jacket, a helmet, a pair of pants, and more.
If you compare it with the Kulkea Trekker, this bag is a bit smaller (60L instead of 70L). Also, I noticed that although it features padded straps, it’s not as comfortable to carry as the Kulkea Trekker. On the other hand, the Athalon Everything is half the price, and it’s just as impressive.
Pros: It’s not the cheapest option on the list, but it’s one of the best values for the money.
Cons: Better-padded shoulder straps would greatly enhance the overall comfort.
MATERIAL: 600 D Polyester
SIZE: 60 L
WEIGHT: 2.75 lbs
PADDING: Shoulder straps
FEATURES: Dimensions 14 x 14 x 23 in. Dual-function back panel. SafeZone top compartment for fragile items. Bottom drainage grommets.
The Thule Roundtrip stands out from its competitors in that it’s a high-end bag with a ton of advanced features. The boots are stored in the rear-loading compartments, which are accessed through the back panel. This panel can be used as a standing mat when fully open, so you can stand on it to prevent your feet from getting wet while you’re changing your boots.
The top compartment is shock-resistant, which makes it the perfect place for storing your ski goggles, phone, etc. The rest of the ski equipment can be easily accessed through both top and front zippers. It includes two side pockets for your beanies, gloves, and the like. In addition, it has several straps so that you can attach your skis or snowboard to the bag.
Pros: I like how sturdy it feels. The bag is specifically engineered to endure rough handling while protecting your gear from the elements.
Cons: In my experience, the bag could benefit from additional padding in certain areas, such as the shoulder straps or the back panel, for improved comfort. Compared to the previous bag, the Thule Roundtrip can be quite a bit more expensive.
DAKINE BOOT LOCKER
MATERIAL: 600 D Polyester
SIZE: 69 L
WEIGHT: 2.4 lbs
FEATURES: Dimensions 20 x 15 x 14 in. It allows for quick access to your gear. Dakine warranty.
With a capacity of 69 liters, the Dakine Boot Locker has room for your boots, pants, a jacket, a helmet, a pair of gloves, and more. The tarp-lined bottom compartment doubles as a changing mat. Its split-level design allows for easy and quick access to all your gear. For carrying, you can use either the central handles or the removable padded shoulder strap.
Advantages: The multiple pockets and compartments in this bag make it super convenient to keep everything well-organized. I can easily access my gear without rummaging through a jumble of items.
Disadvantages: One downside I’ve noticed is that the Dakine Boot Locker can be quite bulky, which can be a challenge, especially if I have limited room in my vehicle. Keep in mind that it’s 20 x 15 x 14 in.
DAKINE BOOT PACK
“Really comfortable to wear”
MATERIAL: 600 D Polyester
SIZE: 50 L
WEIGHT: 1.9 lbs
FEATURES: Dimensions 19 x 14 x 13 in. Rear, front, and top access panels. Padded central compartment for extra protection.
The Dakine Boot Pack features a backpack design that makes it one of the most comfortable options for traveling. This model has padded shoulder straps and a padded back panel for added back comfort. The rear panel doubles as a changing mat. The top compartment has room for a pair of pants, a helmet, and extra layers, while the front zippered pocket is perfect for storing a pair of gloves, a beanie, and a phone.
Pros: The supportive back panel of this backpack makes it very comfortable to carry (although I’d increase the padding in the shoulder straps).
Cons: In my experience, this bag might have limitations when it comes to carrying larger items.
“Comfortable padded back”
MATERIAL: Polyester and PVC
SIZE: 46 L
WEIGHT: N / A
FEATURES: Dimensions 18 x 17 x 15 in. Resistant, waterproof materials.
The Transpack XT1 is made from high-quality polyester for added water protection and wear resistance. The side boot compartments are equipped with drainage grommets. It features two mesh side pockets, which are great for storing small items.
Pros: I think this bag is the perfect size for travel. Compared to other models on the list, the Transpack XT1 is more compact and lightweight.
Cons: Due to its triangular design, it doesn’t have as much capacity as other bags on the list. However, it has a padded back panel that makes it really comfortable to wear.
“The best mid-range option”
MATERIAL: 1680 D Nylon
SIZE: 55 L
WEIGHT: N / A
FEATURES: Dimensions 11.8 x 12.6 x 19.7 in. Water-resistant fabrics. It includes straps to attach your skis or snowboard.
The Unigear offers excellent performance at a reasonable price. This bag has tons of storage options, including a top main compartment, a rear panel for your boots, an internal zip pocket, an external Velcro pocket, and a front zip compartment. Plus, it’s built with water-resistant nylon.
Advantages: In my opinion, this model stands out for its fantastic price. I love the zipper pulls, which help you open and close your bag while you’re wearing gloves.
Disadvantages: Although it’s built with strong materials, some seams start to show wear after a few months.
“Basic, efficient design”
SIZE: N / A
WEIGHT: N / A
PADDING: Lined interior
FEATURES: Dimensions 14 x 18 x 14.5 in. Front, back, and top handles.
The Amazonbasics is a simple, inexpensive option that will help you pack the most important parts of your ski equipment. This bag is reinforced with double stitching, a lined interior, and a padded bottom for extra protection. It includes ventilated side boot compartments, as well as several internal and external pockets for storing gloves, ski goggles, and other things. It’s not the most featured bag on the list, but it does the job and comes at a good price.
THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE CHOOSING YOUR SKI BOOT BAG
DO YOU NEED A BOOT BAG?
You won’t necessarily “need” a ski boot bag on your next ski trip. However, you’ll see that they can be really helpful when it comes to organizing and transporting your gear. In fact, most skiers who use boot bags wonder why they hadn’t bought one before.
Boot bags aren’t designed for storing only boots. Some models are equipped with plenty of straps, compartments, and pockets for storing your clothes, helmets, goggles, gloves, ski poles, and a few snacks. These bags help you keep everything organized on your trips to the ski resort.
In addition, they have a dual protective function. On the one hand, they protect your boots from scratches; on the other hand, they prevent the boots themselves from scratching the rest of your equipment with their buckles.
Once the season is over, you can use them to store your ski gear in a dry, protected place.
Boot bags are available in different shapes and designs. Some models look like duffel bags (typically equipped with a central handle for transport), while other models look like backpacks.
Backpack-like models are the most popular option on the market, as they are more comfortable to carry.
Boot bags can be classified according to their storage options, too. For example, some models have a central main compartment for clothes and two side pockets for boots. These models offer plenty of room while preventing the boots from hitting each other and scratching other gear.
Other models have two separate compartments—typically, a rear panel for the boots and a top compartment for the rest of the gear. These models are quite popular too because they protect your boots while keeping your gear well-organized.
In addition to the main compartments, most models feature a few external pockets. I’m not talking about the side boot pockets but the small zippered pockets that can be used for storing items such as phones, beanies, ski goggles, etc. Usually, these pockets have a fleece liner that protects fragile items from scratches.
Although the bags come in different sizes, most models offer room for a pair of boots, a helmet, a pair of gloves, and a few extra layers. The most popular sizes are between 40 and 70 liters. As you’ll see, large-capacity bags will allow you to carry virtually all your ski gear.
To find the right size, you must think about how much gear you want to transport and the type of bag you’re using to store your skis. For example, if you have a big ski bag, then a compact boot bag might do the job. On the other hand, if you have a small ski bag with room for only your skis, you should look for a roomier boot bag.
Make sure your bag is built with strong, abrasion-resistant, durable materials. Nylon and polyester are commonly used to manufacture this type of item due to their high performance. For air travel, you should choose a highly padded bag. In general, a slightly padded bag is always a good idea if you’re traveling with your gear, whether by car, train, or bus.
Although not all models are water-resistant, this can be a helpful feature if the weather gets a bit ugly. Considering that you are going to be putting some clothes inside the bag, you should go for water-resistant materials.
Also, the interior dividers must be waterproof, so water doesn’t travel from one compartment to the next.
Today, most models feature shoulder straps for easy, comfortable carrying. These straps, which can be fixed or removable, allow you to carry the bag on your back, just like if you were carrying a backpack.
Regardless of whether or not they have shoulder straps, virtually all models feature one or two hand grips, typically on the top and sometimes on the front.
VENTILATION AND DRAINAGE
Boot compartments must have efficient ventilation and drainage systems, which are essential to prevent water from sneaking into the rest of the gear. This system helps remove moisture from the compartment while draining away snow and water.
Zippers protect your belongings, so they must be strong and firm, capable of withstanding pressure and jerks. Security zippers must be padlock-compatible for protection against theft.
If you’re going to be traveling by plane, I recommend that you lock your bag with a TSA lock, which airport security authorities can open and close without breaking it. If you are going to be exposed to extreme weather conditions, make sure the zippers are waterproof to prevent leaks.
Today, many models are available in a range of colors. Most skiers prefer black bags because they don’t look dirty after heavy use. However, keep in mind that black models are more difficult to spot on the airport luggage belt. Also, colorful models are more original, and you know that it’s always good to add some color to your life.
HOW TO STORE YOUR BOOTS
The correct way to store your boots will depend on the type of bag you’re using and its storage options. You should be careful with the boot buckles, as they can be quite delicate. You must prevent the buckles from bending or breaking, and also from scratching other parts of your gear.
HOW TO PREVENT ODORS
Unfortunately, ski boots can be quite smelly after some use. Therefore, as I mentioned in a previous section, your bag must feature an efficient ventilation system. Vents help keep the interior dry while improving air circulation, which prevents odors.
When you’re done skiing, remember to remove the boot liners and let them air-dry. If the liners smell terrible, you should wash them. Some liners can be washed in the washing machine with cold water, while other liners must be washed by hand. If in doubt, check the manufacturer’s recommendations.
CAN I FLY WITH MY BOOT BAG?
Virtually all airlines will allow you to fly with a ski boot bag. The problem is that it will be considered extra luggage and, therefore, will result in an extra charge. Some companies won’t charge you for the weight of this extra luggage but, rather, for the number of extra bags.
I recommend that you take a look at different airlines before buying your ticket because they have different rates and regulations.
For example, some airlines will allow you to carry a ski bag and a ski boot bag; because everything is part of your ski gear, they’ll count it as if it were just an extra piece of luggage.
Hi, I’m Miguel; Adventure traveler, scuba diver and hiking lover. I have been traveling the world for the last 12 years and I hope my experiences, photos and hiking routes inspire you to travel the world too.