Points Summary

My Skateboarding Experience With US Customs at Miami International Airport

I’ve always wanted to bring my skateboard to the airport ever since I saw videos of Casey Neistat skateboarding in airports. I have a regular skateboard and one longboard which is unfortunately too large and heavy to carry to the airport. The one that Casey uses is a Penny board which is lightweight, durable, and made of plastic.

It was never a priority for me to buy a skateboard until this past Sunday. I was in Miami on a 9 hour layover and it was ridiculous trying to find parking in Miami Beach on a Sunday afternoon. It almost took me an hour just to find an open spot on Washington Avenue. There’s just so much construction on Collins Ave and Washington Ave. Don’t get me started on Ocean Avenue where the speed is of a snail. I found a skateboard shop on Collins and inquired about Penny boards. Luckily they had several for sale and the price wasn’t too bad at $129. I was excited and started to test out the Penny board on the streets of Miami Beach. My favorite part was skateboarding on Lincoln Road Mall because the pavement is smooth and the area is large.

Since now I bought a skateboard, I had to lug it with me on my trip to Miami International Airport and then to my final destination in Asuncion, Paraguay. Since I travel with a wheeled backpack carry on, it was easy for me to convert it to a backpack and take my Penny board to the test. Here’s a video I took while skateboarding at MIA airport.

I did get a lot of looks and stares as I breezed through the airport terminal. It makes for a great ice breaker too since the captain saw me board the plane with a skateboard. He told me that he skateboards on his free time and asked me if I was going to skateboard in Asuncion. He said “You know the streets aren’t in good condition right?” I said I bought it in Miami on a layover to cruise around the streets and that I wasn’t planning to use it on my trip to Asuncion. Afterwards, he invited me to the cockpit while the plane was still boarding.

I was able to store the Penny board behind my back and put my backpack over it, like a sandwich. It wasn’t comfortable for long periods, but it helped keep my hands free.

After landing at Miami airport on my way back from Asuncion, I was able to skateboard my way to the Global Entry kiosk which was pretty cool. The US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officer did not like my skateboard though. He asked me how old I am and told me that I was too old to be skateboarding and sent me to secondary screening. At the secondary inspection checkpoint, I told the officers that he didn’t like my skateboard and that’s why he sent me to secondary. They were basically laughing and joking about why I had the skateboard and sent me on my way (they didn’t even open my bags) after checking my passport.

There are definitely some ups, but more downs to bringing a skateboard to an airport. In my case, I don’t think I’ll ever bring my new Penny board to another airport as the novelty has definitely worn off. It’s very burdensome to be carrying a skateboard and lugging around a carry on at the same time.


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