Before you leave for a major trip across the world, it seems everyone has a piece of advice for you. For instance Kevco, the editor of WBM, reminded me not to drink any water that wasn’t bottled. Kevin Henshaw suggested that we take the $15 plane from Manilla to Naga rather than the 8 hour bus ride. And Matt Staker told me, “If you have a layover in Manila make sure you make it out to see some stripper boxing.” (Ummmm….ok Staker.)

But specifically related to wakekskate trips, there were a couple of words of wisdom I wish someone had given me and they are:

1.    Tell them they’re skis. Don’t be too proud when you check in to just tell the airline representative that your wakeskate is in fact a set of skis. This will help you out in several ways. First off it prevents them from giving you the extra charge associated with a wakeboard or surfboard. Secondly, it saves you time. On the several flights that follow you will have plenty of opportunities to whip out your “Do you know what wakeboarding is?” and “It’s a lot like skateboarding on the water” explanations about why you are crossing the world to participate in a sport that no one has ever heard of. For some reason the airlines seem stuck in the past with their preference for 1980’s country club recreational watersports. So just save the explanations for later and simplify the check-in by dubbing yourself a skier.

2.    Check your deck. You’re travelling for one major purpose: to ride. So better double check that your skate is in tip-top shape and will perform well for you in the days and weeks to come. I learned this one the hard way when I went to OWC to practice one last time 2 days before my flight was scheduled to leave. As I was climbing back onto the box to get my board which had stuck to the middle of the slider, it occurred to me that maybe I had worn my board down too much sliding it.  Guess I better get a new one right? Well how many boardshops in the state of Florida have not sold out on the OAK chubby? Answer: ZERO.  Apparently I wasn’t the only one who loved that board. Anyways the point of my sad saga is this: check your deck before you travel and give yourself enough time to repair or replace your deck if you need to.

3.    Try not to look goofy while you sleep if you’re going to sit next to someone with a camera and a blog (OK this one may or may not specifically refer to Brian Reeder. See photo)

 Lacey is headed to the Phillippines as we speak, and will be blogging her trip right here, so be sure to check back often. She is currently stuck in Hong Kong with no idea what day it is. 2 airports, 20 hours, several Xanax, and pounds of trail mix down. One more airport, two more cities and 18 more hours til arrival!