By Kristina Zvaritch
Traveling with freediving equipment can become a headache, especially with uniquely shaped equipment such as freediving bifins and monofins. Apart from finding a case or a bag that will fit them, you also need to take into account the material of the blade (plastic, fiberglass, or carbon fiber), what type of traveling you are doing with the bag, what other equipment you will transport with it, and how much protection you require. If you are planning a freediving trip in the future, you might be faced with the question of how to travel with your freediving bifins and monofin.
When traveling with freediving bifins and/or a monofin, you can buy specific bifins/monofin bags or hard cases. Adequate protection is needed depending on the bag, such as bubble wrap or store-bought protective solutions, and prior planning is needed to navigate how much equipment you can fit into your bags and how you will carry them to your destination.
It can be difficult to find a suitcase or bag that has the correct dimensions for bifins, so most freedivers get a bifins bag or case. These bags are specifically designed to hold bifins and may have some protective features or straps that hold the bifins in place, along with extra pockets for other pieces of diving equipment. If you have a soft bifins bag, it is recommended to wrap your fiberglass or carbon fiber fins with protective material (such as bubble wrap and cardboard) or other makeshift packing material (such as cloth) to keep the blades safe from scratches. If your foot pockets are removable, it is a good idea to remove them so that the blades can lay flat.
The Molchanovs Lightweight Bifins Bag 2 is a convenient bag for straightforward travel to and from a dive site. While it packs very small into your suitcase, the Lightweight Bifins Bag 2 is roomy enough for multiple pieces of equipment and comes with integrated compression straps to hold your bifins in place and protective foam pockets to safeguard the delicate tips of your bifins. If you are already purchasing bifins, you can receive this bag with a 10% discount.
Keep an eye out on molchanovs.com for the upcoming Molchanovs Semihard Bifins Bag.
Monofins are very uniquely-shaped, large, and require a special bag to transport. There are soft monofin bags that are useful for transporting a monofin to and from a dive site, and with the correct Monofin Protection to protect the blades, a soft monofin bag can be used for more strenuous travels, such as on a plane, train, or bus. Semi-hard monofin bags can also be a solution, as they have some stiffness to them and can offer more peace of mind during transportation.
The Molchanovs Lightweight Monofin Bag 2 is a perfect solution for traveling to and from a dive site. This monofin bag can be packed away small and taken with you in your suitcase, and then used at your destination to carry your monofin and other diving equipment across short distances. With backpack-style straps and the option to also insert your bifins, it is the most travel-friendly bag for monofins. For even more protection, check out the Molchanovs Monofin Lightweight Bag 2 + Monofin Protection Bundle.
The Molchanovs Semihard Monofin Bag 2 can be used either for traveling to and from a dive site or for longer distances on buses, trains or planes. It comes with removable plastic inserts that allow the bag keep its shape and offers protection, along with compression straps that keep the monofin snug against the stiff side of the bag.
A hard case is the most protective and sturdiest solution for transporting your bifins and monofin over long distances, as it envelopes your equipment in solid material that can withstand bumps and drops. There are bifins hard cases on the market (look out for a Molchanovs Bifins Hard Case in the future!), but monofins will require a specially-sized hard case due to the unique shape of the monofin.
Molchanovs became a pioneer in the freediving world with the first hard case on wheels built for a monofin, but spacious enough to also carry an ample amount of diving equipment. Built with freediving, monofins, and protection in mind, the Molchanovs Hard Case features an interior compression system with a specific compartment for a monofin, thick walls for protection, four wheels, and an adjustable handle. The Hard Case is also specifically designed with dimensions that can be checked in on a flight without being considered “oversized.”
If you are traveling with other pieces of freediving equipment, such as wetsuits, masks, lanyards, buoys, and so on, you should take the weight of the entire bag into consideration. If you have a soft bag with all of your equipment inside of it, the entire weight of the bag will rest on your shoulder/s or in your hands for the duration of your transit. Along with taking the final weight of your bag into account, you also have to properly position and protect your bifins/monofin against scratches from your other equipment. If you have multiple bags, will you be able to carry all of them easily, or will you have to get a trolley or help from a friend?
For a simpler solution to these questions, consider the Molchanovs Hard Case.
Final ConsiderationsWhen you travel with your gear, try to plan for all types of possible hazards. Whether you bump your bag into walls, or it gets packed between two other suitcases, or transportation staff simply toss it into piles, it is wise to plan for disaster. Remember to never store equipment in very hot places for long periods of time, like the trunk of a car, and make sure to only pack away completely dry equipment.
It is always a wise choice to invest in high quality bags, cases, and protection for your freediving gear, as caring properly for your bifins and monofin can extend the life expectancy. You might also consider investing in yourself with a freediving course to learn how to maximize technique and efficiency with your bifins and/or monofin. For all your freediving needs, trust in the company developed by freedivers for freedivers.