General Cycling Discussion - Flying with bicycles
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06-13-06, 04:52 PM
My brother and I recently decided to travel to Kalifornia this Christmas, specificaly San Francisco. We would very much like to bring bikes because walking in the worlds ulimate mountain biking destination gets old fast, especially when you just escaped from a snow covered hell hole. Only thing is, I've never taken a bike on a plane and I'm sure there are some things I don't know I should be aware of. Granted it won't nearly be as big of a pain as transporting a gun, but my very expensive Giant and My brother's Trek are important enough that I figured I should start a thread on the subject.
I am thinking there are probably airplane specific bike transport cases, and I would like recomendations for good ones. Also, if anybody has any horror stories, I would love to hear them.
06-13-06, 05:22 PM
I don't know about fancy cases but I shipped my bike using a bike box I picked up from a LBS for free. About 30-60 minutes to take the necessary pieces apart. I think I got the instructions from Sheldon Brown's website. The airlines will charge you $80 plus it will count as a piece of checked luggage. If shipping is an option it might be easier and cheaper. I think I paid $60 one way. The main bit of advice I have is make sure you don't pack any tools, etc. in your carry-on. I've had a Swiss Army knife that I used as a multitool and a Krypto NYC chain confiscated because it didn't occur to me that they could also be used as weapons (according to airline safety). They also took a second look at a crescent wrench and a set of allen keys but ultimately let them through.
06-13-06, 05:35 PM
I'm no stranger to problems with carry on. I won't go anywhere without a knife other than on an airplane, so I will definitely have at least one other checked bag. As you probably didn't know, I used to work at a bike shop. I built a lot of bikes, and I've seen a fair amount of them get busted up inside of cardboard boxes, including my dads rare early 90's Ritchey MTB. If cardboard boxes are the best bet, I'll have to settle for getting ripped off by bike renting shops in SF.
06-13-06, 06:36 PM
In that case I know at least Performance has a flight case:
It's pricey at $200 + $160 R/T for the extra baggage cost though.
06-13-06, 08:55 PM
I'm flying to Portland in 2 weeks, and found the best way for me to get a bike there was FedEx. My LBS said it shouldn't cost more than $40, instead of the $90 each way the airline quoted. I am shipping another small box ahead that will contains shoes, clothing, tools, etc. But I have a friend out there that's willing to house my bike box til I have to ship it BACK here.
06-14-06, 09:05 AM
Here you go! What? Oh! This is Flying with Bicycles, not Flying Bicycles. Never mind!
06-14-06, 10:06 AM
Also, if anybody has any horror stories, I would love to hear them.
No you don't. Really.
06-14-06, 10:14 AM
I've had Trico Iron Cases in the past and can recommend them highly, especially if you plan to keep and reuse. They have wheels oriented like a handtruck which are a big plus. Many bike shops offer rentals.
06-15-06, 03:53 PM
Too much hassel. 75 bucks a day for renting it is.
06-15-06, 07:41 PM
Try the touring forum. Those guys (gals) travel with bikes all the time.
And I am so jealous of them.
06-15-06, 10:33 PM
If you rent for $75 per day, you've paid for your trico hard case in less than one week.
06-16-06, 09:13 AM
Duane41 - You might be able to fit all that extra stuff in the box with your bike. I know at least with UPS the size restrictions are such that I could have put in much more weight at the same shipping price.
06-16-06, 05:49 PM
I won't be riding every day, so 75 bucks a day for mountain bike rental will end up costing me about 225 dollars or so if that. Besides, one of the people I will be visiting has a large road bike collection. Boring, but usable. At least that way I won't spend any more money than I need to, and I won't have to worry about the safety of my Giant.
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