how to ship fishing rods safely, 5 ways with cost factors

People go fishing because they enjoy this activity in the holidays. It is considered one of the oldest activities that some people have been performing due to their hobby, while others take it as a source of their earnings.

Today, people enjoy this activity on a local river located in their area or an open ocean by traveling long distances from their hometown. Sometimes, I travel long distances from my hometown to the big ocean to enjoy fishing. It’s important to have all the fishing tools at the point of fishing,

and it’s also very important to ship all the essential equipment safely and without any breakage. Otherwise, you will be facing big disappointment in the end if you get any of your fishing rods broken.

One of the most important equipment for fishing is the fishing rod. Because of their long length, fishing rods are delicate and crafty to ship. This article provides all the needed information on how to ship a fishing rod, from the process of packaging rods and the options of shipment you may have in your area to the necessary guidelines for the fishermen based on my experience.

It will be helpful, and you’ll be enjoying your holidays with fun.

Importance of properly shipping a Fishing rod

Generally, a fishing rod is not just a tool but a great investment for an angler. The fishing rod is the equipment on which an angler uses his fishing skills to enjoy this activity. So, it’s very important to ship it properly in the area without any breakage. Here are some reasons why you should ship the fishing rod properly.


Shipping rod is fragile yet expensive equipment that can effortlessly get damaged during transit. So, properly protecting and handling fishing rods can help protect them from any damage during shipping.

Cost saving

Proper packaging reduces the chances of damage during shipping, helping to save money on replacing damaged rods.

Insurance coverage

If you want to ship the expensive rods, it may be worth considering insurance coverage to defend against any damage or loss. However, insurance may not cover the damage due to improper packaging. So, it’s necessary to ensure the rod is packaged correctly.


If you are a fishing guide or professional angler, shipping the fishing rods to clients is a common practice, and proper packaging of fishing rods can indicate your professionalism and how much you pay attention to minor details during packaging, which can help to build your reputation and attract more clients.

Customer satisfaction and reputation of the company

If you are a seller or retailer of fishing rods, ensuring the fishing rods shipped in good condition can improve customer satisfaction and reduce the chances of returns or complaints, enhancing the reputation.

The potential risks of improper shipping of fishing rods

Properly shipping fishing rods is very sensitive because they are so delicate that they can be easily damaged. So, some potential risks are linked to the improper shipping of fishing rods.

Can be damaged during transit:

One of the most common damaging risk factors of fishing rods during transit is rough handling or excessive pressure, which can break or curl the rods, leading to structural damage. So, properly handling fishing rods during shipping is necessary to avoid damage.

Can be damaged due to inadequate packaging:

The packaging of fishing rods plays a vital role in the overall protection of fishing rods and reduces the risk of damage. Use all the appropriate cushioning materials; otherwise, there will be a higher risk of damage.

Can be damaged due to insufficient labeling:

Improper labeling can increase the risk of damage because, with the proper instructions, the couriers may handle the package with the needed care.

Can be damaged due to inadequate protection from moisture:

Some fishing poles are made with sensitive materials like fiberglass or graphite, which can be damaged by exposure to moisture. If the packaging of a fishing rod is not sealed properly, there is a higher chance of water damage; it can weaken the rod or even damage it.

Can be damaged due to immobilization within the shipping package:

The fishing rod should be packed well without making any extra space inside the package; otherwise, it can cause movement inside the packaging of the fishing rod during transit, increasing the risk factors of damage.

Can be damaged due to inappropriate storage conditions:

The weather plays an important role in the packaging of fishing rods; extreme temperatures and excessive humidity may impact the integrity of fishing rods. For example, extreme heat can cause the material to expand, while extreme cold weather may cause the material to contract, increasing the risks of structural damage to the fishing rod.


To avoid structural damage to the fishing rod, it’s always important to check the weather conditions before packing it for shipping because cold weather can cause the material to contract. In contrast, the material tends to expand during extreme heat.

Can be damaged due to mishandling by carriers

How the parcel is handled during shipping transportation can impact the overall conditions of the rods. Any mishaps, including dropping or rough handling during loading or unloading the package, can cause huge damage.

All the risk factors are strongly associated with the packaging of the fishing rod. If the fishing rod is properly packaged, it will reduce the potential risk of damage when shipping the fishing pole. So here is the proper guideline for preparing a fishing rod for shipping.

How to prepare Fishing rods for shipping:

Fishing rods are extremely delicate, and shipping the fishing rod is a bit tough. If you are a seller or retailer of fishing rods, you want your customers to avoid getting damaged fishing rods due to mismanagement, or if you are an angler, you always want your fishing rods shipped to the place with proper care. For this, one of the most basic and demanding things is the proper packaging of fishing rods, not only because some courier services refuse to cater long items but also because other couriers will take additional charges when your package has a certain length.

The best part is now you can pack your fishing rod by reading the step-by-step guidance in this article and the best options for shipping the fishing rod, depending on the fishing rod type.

Before moving toward the procedure, it’s important to check the condition of all the fishing rods you have. Any fishing rod in imperfect condition should be discarded because it reduces extra load and burden. Only choose those fishing rods in good condition because a good-condition fishing rod can enhance your fishing experience.

Material for packaging of fishing rod:

Because fishing rods are expensive and delicate, they should be well packed to ensure they don’t get any damage during shipping. The following is the material needed to pack the fishing rod;

  • Measuring tape
  • Bubble wrap
  • Scotch tape
  • Scissors
  • Packaging paper
  • Cardboard tubes/ PVC pipes
  • Pipe caps
  • Hacksaw (for the adjustment of the length of the tubes or pipes)
  • Cardboard box

After gathering all the above material, you must follow the following steps to pack your fishing rods securely.

Preparation of Fishing rod case:

Prepare your rod case before shipping

How to ship 1-piece or multiple-piece fishing rods?

For shipping 1-piece or multiple-piece fishing rods, the initial step is to take the correct estimates of the length of your fishing rod. Start measuring from top to bottom, adding some inches on both ends. Mark the longest rod if you are going to pack the multiple rods.

Do you want the highest protection from fishing rods at a cheap price? The use of heavy-duty cardboard tubes is the most cost-effective technique for the packing of fishing rods. It is the cheapest way to pack up your fishing rod securely. The cardboard tube is used to roll the carpet, so you can easily get the cardboard tube from any carpet store at a lower price. There are also higher chances of getting it for free.

Another possible way is using the PVC pipe that you can easily get from any local fishing shop. You can use one tube for a single piece or even three fishing rods; the rods should be manageable.

Preparation-of-Fishing-rod-case with pvc pipe

Take the tube or the pipe of the exact length of your fishing rods; otherwise, you can also take the longer size and cut the tube to the exact length using the pen and measuring tape. Use the hacksaw for cutting.

Removal of spinning/fishing reels:

It’s important to remove the reel before wrapping up the fishing rod because some reels may be different from others and need to fit better in the pipe or tube.

Hold the fishing rod facing the reel’s foot upwards for this. Turn the two screws attached at the top of your fishing rod in a counterclockwise direction until it loosens.

Pull the Fishing reel’s foot up and detach it from the spinning rod. You can wrap the bubble sheet around the reel for protection and put it into your traveling bag.

Wrapping up the fishing rods:

Wrapping up the fishing rods for safely shipment

Wrap the two layers of bubble wrap on each rod carefully. The entire rod should be covered well, especially the pole of the fishing rod because these are the most delicate parts. Use the scotch tape around the fishing rod to secure the bubble wrap.

Arranging the fishing rods lengthwise:

Now, arrange the fishing rods lengthwise, take the similar rods in a bundle, and wrap them together using scotch tape. This is used to prevent the rod from tangling inside the tube.

Inserting the fishing rod into the tube:

After packing bubble wrap, insert the fishing rod into the tube or pipe in a horizontal direction. Ensure there is no leftover space on either side of the tube or pipe to prevent the rod from moving inside the tube. You can leave up to 2 inches of space on either side.

Test it by shaking:

Before moving towards the further step of sealing the pipe caps, shake the tube in a back-and-forth direction to check if there’s any empty place. If the rods inside the tube are moving, an indication of empty spaces, then add more bubble wrap that works as a cushion so that the empty spaces should be filled up.

Seal the pipe ends:

Seal the pipe ends to ensure the rod is safely packed.

Once you are done with everything, it’s time to seal both ends of the pipe cap. To ensure more protection by using the scotch tape on caps. If you don’t have the caps, use cute pieces of cardboard, place them instead of the cap, and use the tape to make the seal on both sides.  

End up by labeling the container:

Labeling the package is the most important step before you ship the fishing rod. The label should have the information of the recipient’s name, address, and contact details and write “fragile .”The label ” fragile ” indicates that the item inside the package is delicate and should be handled with care. The label is necessary if you are shipping it via any courier company. Still, keeping the fishing rod package with you while traveling is also helpful. Because it will be helpful to find, in case you lose your package.

Packaging multiple Fishing rods:

Buying a large enough tube for multiple fishing rod packaging to contain adequate space would be best. Make sure to wrap up each rod individually and properly and arrange them all facing the parallel directions. The end should contain enough padding. If you can’t compromise on it, ship the rods individually or buy a larger tube.

Options for shipping Fishing rods:

How to ship 6-, 7- or 8-foot fishing rod? The procedure and options are identical for 6-7- or eight-foot fishing rods. However, all the shipment options for shipping the fishing rods are only suitable for some. One should choose the following options according to their convenience and destination.  

 Option 1: Through Car:

Learn how to ship Fishing rods Through Car

Can I take the fishing rods with me on a road trip? Yes! You can take fishing rods with you through driving if they are well-packed. This is the cheapest way to ship fishing rods and is quite useful. You can arrange your fishing rods on the roof of inside your car with the help of the stand, preventing the rods from tangling into each other. You can also put your fishing rod at the back of your car. But, putting the expensive fishing rods at the back of your car can cause tangling.

Here are some tips on how you can prevent your expensive fishing rods from tangling,

Painter tape:

Painter tape is used to make the two pieces of fishing rod untangle. Make the 2-3 sections of tape on the rod, including the hook area and fishing weight, to avoid the banging of the rods while traveling.


Velcro tape is one of the cheapest and easiest DIY tangling solutions. Use at least three sections of it on the rods while traveling.

Pool noodle:

Pool noodles can be helpful in some ways for fishing.

Take a pool noodle of standard length with a hollow center that can accommodate the length of your fishing rod. Ensure the noodles are long enough to cover the length of the entire rod, providing a protective barrier. Cut the pool noodle, making an opening to insert your fishing rod. Once the rod is inserted into the pool noodle, you can further secure it using the runner bands or Velcro state around the noodle at different sections. This keeps the noodle in place and prevents any movement while traveling, preventing tangling.

Make Rod sock by DIY:

Fishermen make the DIY of cloth to put in the fishing rods. They use old clothes and usually take the arm portion from an old shirt to make a DIY sock. The advantage of this DIY sock for the rod is to cover the rod and protect it well from bumping.


Para-cord or shoelaces can be used for this. Just tie it around the fishing rod and make a bow. It is an easy way to make the rods tangle-free while shipping.


Use the ribbon on each rod to avoid the tangling of rods into each other.

Option 2:  Fly:

learn how to ship Fishing rods through Fly

Can I bring a fishing pole on an airplane? Or how you can fly with fishing rods? Flying with fishing rods is also a good option to consider, but before that, you will have to research the rules and regulations of the specific airline you plan to fly. Here are a few considerations;

Airline policies:

Every airline has its policy for sports equipment like fishing rods. It’s better to check the rules and regulations of the specific airline you have planned to fly. However, some airlines may allow you to take the fishing rods as your checked-in or carry-on luggage, while others allow you to check in.

Packaging of fishing rods:

If you are allowed to bring the fishing rods with you on an airplane, you must pack well to prevent any damage. For this, consider the hard-shell case and the protective tube for fishing rods. Keep in mind that the size and weight of fishing rods should meet the criteria of the airline’s rules and regulations.

Security checkpoints:

Fishing rods must undergo an additional screening procedure to ensure their safety. You even have to remove the rod from its tube or case if requested by the security personnel.

Option 3: Purchase and send rods:

How to ship fishing rods cheaply? This option is the cheapest way to ship fishing rods at your required location. You can order the fishing rods from any retailer or store where you want to go fishing. Your rods will be reached at your required location safely, and you will not have to get into any struggle of shipping the fishing pole safely.

You only have to make arrangements to bring the fishing rods back with you to the home.

Option 4: Purchase the rods when you reach the location:

For this, you will have to do some research before moving out from your home; research some fishing equipment stores near your desired location. You can also go through the store’s websites or contact them through email or contact number and ask about the quality and prices of the fishing rods.

Negotiations are quite common in some countries, and if you travel to any Asian country for fishing, you can ask them for concessions in price. This is also the cheapest way and causes you less charges.

The only disadvantage is that you must still arrange to bring your fishing rod home. But still, it can reduce the shipment charges at one end.

Option 5:  Ship with alternative services:

Different mail services are available that are the best ways to transport fishing rods at local and international levels.

Ship the fishing rods via USPS:

Ship the fishing rods via USPS Service

United States Postal Service (USPS) is a government agency that is generally cost-effective for shipping delicate items such as fishing rods.

Ship the fishing rods via UPS:

Ship the fishing rods via UPS service

United Parcel Service (UPS) is a well-known company offering a wide range of shipping services, including air, ground, and international shipping. They have general instructions for the shipment of fishing rods, and you should read their rules and regulations before using this service.

Ship the fishing rods via FedEx:

Ship the fishing rods via FedEx service

Shipping the fishing rods via FedEx is also the very best option. This company is popular and provides domestic and international shipping services. They also contain certain fishing rod guidelines, so check them before shipping them.

Ship the fishing rods via DHL:

DHL is a shipping company that offers domestic and international shipping. They also contain general guidelines for shipping the fishing rod, and you should look at that before choosing this service.

Best courier service Option for shipping the Fishing rods that are “fragile.”

When it comes to handling fishing rods and fragile items with care, here are the few best courier services known for their expertise in handling and shipping fragile items:

  • FedEx offers a special service for fragile items called “FedEx Fragile Express.” They also offer specialized packaging options to ensure double protection of fragile items such as fishing rods.
  • UPS offers a service named “UPS Pack and Ship Guarantee,” specifically designed for fragile items like fishing rods to ship with proper care. Besides that, it also contains the shipping insurance program for the customers.
  • USPS is also known for shipping fishing rods. Still, they may not contain specific guidelines for packaging fishing rods, so you can ensure the safety of your fishing rods by properly packing them in the packaging material. 

How much does it cost to ship a fishing rod?

The cost of shipping a fishing rod can vary depending on several factors, like the weight and dimensions of the package, the shipping distance, the shipping service provider, and any additional services you may require. To get an accurate cost, it’s best to check with the specific shipping service you plan to use. Most shipping companies, such as FedEx, UPS, or USPS, provide online calculators or customer service representatives who can assist you in determining the cost based on your specific requirements.

Ways to reduce the cost of shipping Fishing rods:

The shipping cost of fishing rods may be decreased because of several factors given below;

If the fishing rod is well packed:

If your Fishing rod is packed well, it doesn’t need to be secured with extra packaging material that adds to the shipment cost.

Shipping delays:

Mostly, longer delivery time comes with a reduction in shipping charges. Shipping the fishing rod using the slower yet more cost-effective shipping method may reduce expenses.

Shipping insurance:

Purchasing the Shipping insurance may not reduce your shipping cost for a fishing rod, instead adding up more charges, but it benefits you more in return. You are compensated for your expensive fishing rods in case of any unfortunate incident. Your money isn’t going to waste.

Factors that affect the cost of shipping of fishing rods:

Here are some factors that may directly affect the cost of shipping the fishing rods:

Location of shipping:

Shipping location plays a vital role because after COVID-19, the world faces a storm of inflation, and fuel cost has increased. If you want to ship your fishing rod far from your present location, it will cost you more. For instance, shipping to remote locations or internationally is more expensive due to increased transportation and handling requirements.

Cost carry because of high shipping speed and shipping provider:

If you want your fishing rods shipped faster than usual, then it may cause you more shipping charges. You have to pay a bit more fee.

Busy time frames:

If you are shipping your fishing rods in a busy time frame, you might have to pay more.

Importance of shipping insurance for shipping the Fishing rod:

It’s always recommended to buy shipping insurance. It doesn’t reduce the cost of shipping. Instead, it adds more. Still, it is used to protect your expensive fishing rods in case of any unfortunate incident during shipping. So, it’s better to pay a little more during shipping to add more protection for the fishing rod and prevent you from any financial risk.

Common shipping mistakes to avoid:

If you want to ship your fishing rods to the desired location, you need to focus on every single detail to avoid any damage to your fishing rod. , if you are a seller, you will never want your customer unhappy because of any damage that occurs during the shipment of fishing rods due to poor packaging. It will highly impact the professionalism and credibility of your business. Happy customers mean successful business. So, here are some of the mistakes that occur in common, and you should avoid them to reduce the chances of damage.

Carefully wrapping up the fragile areas:

When shipping the fishing rods, the fishing rods’ poles are delicate and must be well packed. Use double or triple layers of bubble wrap on the poles and tape it around the wrapped surface for ultimate protection.

Using the wrong material:

Go for the right material. This is among most sellers’ and anglers’ biggest mistakes while shipping their fishing rods. They buy the wrong material because of low prices or need to double-check their item after packaging. So, it can cause damage to their fishing rods during the transit period. To avoid such damage, always choose the required packing material instead of buying the wrong one because it’s cheap or easily available at your nearest shop.

Not labeling the package correctly:

Whether keeping your fishing rods with you during the drive or using any other means of shipping, you must label your package with the correct information, including your name, address, contact details, and written fragile on it. The contact information is necessary to lose your belongings during the journey. Labeling it correctly before giving it to the shipping company is significant. The correct labeling will not only deliver your parcel to you securely, but the mentioned word  ‘fragile’ signals the handler to handle the parcel carefully because it contains delicate items inside the package.

If you are a seller, always double-check the client’s contact information before shipping the fishing rods. Failure can lead to a waste of time and money for both you and your clients.

Benefits of properly shipping your Fishing rod:

The best feeling is receiving your parcel safely and soundly without damage. Imagine you will be impressed when you receive your expensive fishing rods without damage.

Receiving the undamaged fishing rods after shipment is not only linked to a sense of satisfaction and happiness but also benefits you in several ways;

Save the money on repairs:

 What can I do if I receive my fishing rods damaged?

The 1st thing you can do is to claim compensation if you have purchased the shipping insurance. But unfortunately, if you haven’t, you can’t do anything except spend money on its repair. If you have ordered from any authentic platform, you can also file a return complaint. Proper shipping of fishing rods may benefit you by saving you money that will be spent on repairs. If you sell fishing rods, your customers will be very optimistic.

Avoiding the need to replace your rod:

Proper shipping of fishing rods may prevent you from struggling to replace the rod. It will save you time. Proper shipping of fishing rods may help you to enjoy this activity to the fullest.

Protecting your investment:

Proper shipping of fishing rods without any damage is worth your investment. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on its repair and face any other struggles. If you are a business owner, this will save you time and the credibility of your business.

What to do if my shipment of fishing rod is delayed:

The shipment can be delayed due to weather conditions, protests, or other unforeseen reasons. You can see the location of your shipment through the tracking number provided. Almost every courier service provides a specific tracking number to locate the parcel’s location. Another way is to contact your courier company by email and ask about the reason for the delay.

Final Advice for fisherman

This article is full of advice and guidelines for fishermen and anglers if they want to go far for fishing and want to ship the expensive fishing rods most cheaply without any damage.

 The fisherman should remember the following guidelines for properly shipping fishing poles. 

From this article, the fisherman has learned the following;

  • The fishing rods are too sensitive, and you have to pack the fishing rod with the proper material.
  •  Always double-wrapped the sensitive parts of fishing rods.
  • Make sure not to leave space in the packaging of the fishing rod.
  • Always properly label the package of a fishing rod with the correct contact details.
  • Always label “fragile” on the package of a fishing rod.
  • Always choose the transportation that suits your location well, and not all shipping options suit everyone.
  • Always use ribbons, Para-cord, and Velcro tape to tie each fishing rod and bow to prevent tangling if traveling in a car. You can also use other methods discussed in this article.
  • It’s better to buy shipping insurance; it will be helpful for you in any unfortunate circumstances.
About Jason

Jason is a skilled and experienced Tackle Shop Manager with 17 years of fishing expertise and four years of successfully managing a prominent shop. His passion for fishing, commitment to education, and unbiased gear reviews make him a trusted resource in the industry.

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