I just read on the PWA website that TAP airlines will have an special pricing for Windsurf equipment on their flights to Cape Verde. I hope all the companies get inspired and copy the policy, like they also copy a lot of the "bad policies".
It is really scary to fly with your windsurf equipment sometimes because sometimes you dont know how much they will charge you.
The charter flights to the Canaries are normally ok with gear if you pack it correctly. Normally I fly Thomas Cook or Thomson from Gran Canaria to the UK and then I fly from the UK to wherever I go. Normally (at least with Thomson for sure) you have to pay about £40 (not sure about this, it might be even less) for a windsurf set both ways, and a set can be made of 4 bags, with each bag no heavier than 23 kilos. i think that is pretty good. Ryanair used o be good in the beginning, now it is kind of a nightmare and I wouldnt recommend it! your normal bag can only be 15 kilos, and that is kind of a joke, considering that then you can only take 1, and only 1 bag onboard, with your computer and your things... so this is a bit rubbish. then, each windsurfing bag can costs €40 (i think) and has to be under 20 kilos, and you can only take 2 bags like this. Again, not good.
Then, to fly somewhere else I normally fly with United, or the Star Alliance group. Now they also have a kind of good policy on United, which is $200 for a windsurf set that can also be several bags, but the total of all the bags cannot be over 110 pound (aprox 50 kilos). You can take quite a bit of stuff, here is a good technic:
on the Europe to USA flights you can take one carry on bag, plus one personal bag (computer backpack or hand bag, etc...). so you can put, a lot of your clothes on the carry on bag and still can take your back pack with your computer etc.... then on your normal check-in bag you can take up to 23 kilos, so you can fit some of your "heavy" things like fins and extensions, harness, mast feet etc.. on it (in the end, these things take a lot of weight!), because you have part/most of your clothes on the carry on. Then, for the gear, if you have light bags (hehehe.. like the Flying Objects bags... they are super light so you can fit more stuff!) you could take a couple of bards (and a surf board), about 4 masts, one boom and 3 sails easy. The only down side is that "officially" it specifies that "one set of windsurf has only one board"... well this is rubbish, because nearly everyone's set of windsurfing has at least one small and one big board, like in golf they have quite a lot of different golf clubs. hopefully they will change this too!
aaaaanyways.. I hope someone from the airlines will read this and decides to change their policies too to help us fly more to go sailing all the time!!!!!