If you are planning to travel to a far destination and would like to bring along your electric skateboard, then it would be best to understand how to take an electric skateboard on a plane, plus all aviation authority limitations.
Simply said, if your electric skateboard has a battery of less than 100 Wh, you can take it on the plane without any concerns. If the battery of your e-board is bigger, there are more nuances to consider.
In this article, we talk about why some electric skateboards are not allowed on the plane and what would be the alternatives.
- Safety Authorities Approach To Electric Skateboards
- Why Can’t I Take an Electric Skateboard On a Plane?
Safety Authorities Approach To Electric Skateboards
Nowadays, there are many rules set by the TSA, FAA, IATA, and other aviation authorities concerning traveling with electronics with lithium-ion batteries.
Lithium batteries are considered hazardous because they can accidentally spark a fire inside the cabin, causing panic or damage.
If you have checked your skateboard, you might have noticed its Li-ion batteries. If you are keen, you probably know the batteries’ capacity.
Most e-boards come with a battery of more than 160 Wh. Therefore, flying with electric skateboards is prohibited by most airlines.
However, the Federation Aviation Administration recommends a maximum of two spare (uninstalled) lithium ion and lithium metal batteries under 160Wh (per battery) as safe for travel.
However, they must be carried as carry-on and not checked-in baggage. As a passenger, it is recommended to remove the batteries from your electric skateboard and protect the terminals from short-circuiting or malfunctioning.
Why Can’t I Take an Electric Skateboard On a Plane?
You cannot take an electric skateboard on a plane if it does not meet the airline’s strict regulations. This includes the battery’s capacity or the skateboard’s size.
Fortunately, you can carry your electric board if it meets all the airline’s travel requirements.
Most airlines today are cautious about battery size. Some will only allow installed Lithium-ion batteries less than 100Wh as check-in baggage because of safety.
Batteries with more than 100Wh, but less than 160Wh require approval by the authorities before you can take them on board.
If the Lithium-ion battery short circuits or malfunctions inside the cabin, it can be disastrous. So, a few airlines will not allow electric boards at all, even with batteries less than 100Wh.
As a passenger, you should contact your airline to see if they allow electric skateboards onboard. This will help you make arrangements for your electric skateboard travel plans.
What Happens If a Lithium Battery Goes On a Plane?
It is okay for lithium-ion batteries to go onboard if they are in good condition or meet the recommended power output.
Today, most airlines and travel authorities require Li-ion batteries less than 160Wh under safety protocols. Furthermore, these batteries and devices with the batteries must be cleared as carry-on or checked baggage.
Again, ordinary batteries have positive and negative terminals. Lithium-ion batteries, in this case, have several built-in cells with larger output.
So, for fear of poor manufacture or malfunctioning, most airlines are cautious about onboard lithium batteries because an explosion from the battery can cause panic among passengers or damage the plane.
Luckily, with proper packaging, a Lithium battery can go on a plane without worry. You can leave spare batteries in their packages or use tape to cover the terminals before boarding a plane.
As much as you might want to carry your electric skateboard on a plane, the battery needs to be less than 160Wh.
At least, this is according to air safety standards. You must contact the airline’s authority for further arrangements if it exceeds that.
Can You Bring an Electric Skateboard On a Plane If the Battery Is Over 100Wh?
Sure. You can. However, you must always remember that many airline authorities have regulations concerning lithium-ion batteries with a battery capacity of more than 101Wh and less than 160Wh rating.
You must contact the relevant authorities for further clarification if a battery is between these ratings.
Also, you must disconnect the battery from the board and bring it onboard only as carry-on baggage.
Airline authorities have a limit per passenger. They do not allow transportation of two separate lithium-ion batteries with (101-160Wh per battery).
How to Travel by Plane with an Electric Longboard of More than 160Wh
Nowadays, airlines and other air travel authorities do not allow boarding with batteries that have over 160Wh.
Some major airlines will strictly restrict traveling with electric skateboards, no matter the battery’s capacity. So, to enjoy riding your board again, you must know what to do before booking a flight.
The first action as an e-skateboard owner is determining which airline accepts traveling with electric longboards as check-in or carry-on baggage. This will help you determine the exact flight to book.
Later, it would be best to check your longboard’s battery capacity before confirming with the airline’s regulations on traveling with electric longboards, especially if the battery’s capacity is more than 160Wh.
According to TSA, FAA, EASA, IATA, and other air travel authorities, passengers cannot travel with Li-ion batteries containing more than 160Wh.
This means you should consider other options, like disconnecting the battery and traveling with an empty board, and then rent or purchase new ones after arriving at your destination.
Another alternative is to use courier services like FedEx, DHL, or UPS to transport the longboard plus its batteries or the batteries separately without the skateboard.
Luckily, a few airlines offer special carry-on luggage services. So, you can consult them to find out if they can allow the transportation of lithium-ion batteries with more than 160Wh.
Electric Skateboard – Check-In or Carry-On Baggage?
After approval by the airline’s authority, you can board an airplane with your electric skateboard. However, that is not all.
Skateboards with Li-ion batteries of more than 160Wh are not permitted on a plane. Some airlines recommend carrying the skateboard with batteries less than 160Wh (per battery) as carry-on baggage because of safety.
Li-ion batteries are hazardous. So, most airlines recommend passengers carry them in case of accidents.
Airline staff are trained to handle a malfunctioning, short-circuited, or overheating lithium-ion battery inside the plane, compared to a check-in lithium-ion battery.
Some airlines accept installed batteries of less than 100Wh as checked-in baggage. But some do not.
On the contrary, most airlines will not allow batteries up to 101Wh-160Wh as checked-in luggage. A passenger must remove the batteries (under 160Wh), cover the terminals, and bring them as carry-on baggage.
Flying with Electric Skateboard – FAQs
1. Why Do Airlines Not Allow Lithium Batteries On Planes?
For fear of short-circuiting. Remember that Lithium batteries are fire hazards and can accidentally overheat and produce heat (thermal runway). So, after approval, aviation authorities suggest carrying limited lithium batteries under safe flight measures, either as carry-on or checked luggage.
2. What Type of Battery Does an Electric Skateboard Use?
Lithium-ion is the most common battery electric skateboard used today. These batteries have high performance, increased watt hour, and low voltage sag. However, other e-boards use Li-Po (Lithium Polymer) or LiFePO4 (Lithium Iron Phosphate).
3. Can You Take a OneWheel On an Airplane?
According to TSA and airline authorities, you cannot take OneWheel XR, GT, or Pint X because they use larger Lithium Iron-Phosphate batteries (over 100Wh). However, you can fly with the original OneWheel Pint Plus, which uses smaller (under 100Wh) Lithium Iron-Phosphate batteries.
4. Does United Airlines Allow Electric Skateboards?
Unfortunately, United Airlines does not allow electric skateboards. Additionally, Southwest, JetBlue, Japan, Air France, and British, just to name a few, also do not allow passengers to carry electric skateboards as carry-on or checked luggage.
It only allows non-powered skateboards on a plane. Most e-skateboards use powered Li-ion batteries, which pose serious fire hazards in a plane.
5. What Airlines Allow Electric Skateboards?
Many airlines are open to traveling with electric skateboards. These include, and are not limited to, American, Virgin, and Singapore Airlines.