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  1. #1
    Much better Mr. Buckles ghostofcrujones's Avatar
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    bikes on a plane!

    I am trying to box a bike to bring on a flight and Delta's size req's are (length + width + height) under 62". I scored some bike boxes from a local shop, but cant find anything near this small size requirement. Does anyone know where i can find a bike box/container this size?

    Has anyone out there manage a way to travel with a bike on commercial airlines without having to pay overrage fees? I think even after taking off wheels and handlebard + stem, my frame is almost 62" (length and height) without the couple inches necessary for width of the box. this seems liek a pretty impossible squeeze.

    i've heard of people wrapping a dissassembled bike in bubble wrap and a burlap sack. has anyone had any luck with this?

    -john

  2. #2
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    I don't know about other airlines, but Air Canada has a two-piece limit when it comes to luggage. It doesn't matter to them what size those pieces are or how much they weigh ... just that you do not bring more than two pieces.

    I made the mistake once of bringing my bicycle in a box, and two smallish bags ... and was charged some hefty overage fees!! Since then I've always limited myself to the two pieces: my bicycle in a box, and a large laundry bag containing everything else! It all weighs the same as it did when I had three pieces, and it all takes up the same amount of room ... but it falls within Air Canada's regulations.

    One other thing to remember is that you will always be charged for domestic flights within North America, but that if you travel internationally you should not be charged.

    As for your particular situation, 62" is pretty big!! That's 5 feet!! I take it you are a tall person with a very large bicycle? Once I remove both wheels and the handlebar my bicycle length is probably less than 4 feet, in fact, I usually pack mine with either the front or rear rack still on, and have room to spare. However, have you tried removing your rear derailleur? I had to do that with one hard-shell case I rented. It was a teensy case, and that was the only way I could get my bicycle to fit. That might give you a few extra inches.

    If you are going to do the bubble wrap and burlap sack method, I think I'd cover the whole thing in a large plastic bag as well to hold it all together. I have heard of one person doing this successfully, but his bicycle was a bit of a "beater" so I don't think he was in a panic about damaging it.

  3. #3
    Much better Mr. Buckles ghostofcrujones's Avatar
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    yeah, the problem is it's 62" combined (length + width + height)...i was a bit confued at first. it's a super-tight fit when its 62" combined.

    Thanks for the feedback/tips.
    -john

  4. #4
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghostofcrujones
    I am trying to box a bike to bring on a flight and Delta's size req's are (length + width + height) under 62". I scored some bike boxes from a local shop, but cant find anything near this small size requirement. Does anyone know where i can find a bike box/container this size?
    Unfortunately, it can't be done with a regular / standard / 700c bicycle. As in... at all.

    Worse yet, the official policy for most airlines is that you will have to pay an $80 fee each way for taking a normal bike, boxed, on a plane, not sure if this is Delta's policy as well but it's likely. Unofficially, the bike fee is not consistently applied.

    Has anyone out there manage a way to travel with a bike on commercial airlines without having to pay overrage fees?
    Yep.... You can either:

    1) Pick up a folding bike, such as a Bike Friday.
    2) Pick up an S&S coupled bike.
    3) Retrofit your existing bike with S&S couplers ($500 minimum, not possible with aluminum frames)
    4) Pack your bike into a box provided by your friendly neighborhood bike shop, show up at the airport with it, and hope that you don't get charged.

    You could also pick up a super-cheap folding bike like a Dahon for $200 - $300, if you aren't going anywhere too remote, too challenging, or leaving home for too long. I did this for a week-long tour of Belgium and it worked out OK, and still use that as my "beater" bike.


    i've heard of people wrapping a dissassembled bike in bubble wrap and a burlap sack. has anyone had any luck with this?
    The very suggestion gives me the jibblies. Don't even bother.

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