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  1. #1
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Packing for the PBP

    There are A LOT of rules and regs surrounding air travel now ... when I travelled to Europe 4 years ago, it was a piece of cake compared with now!

    Here's a site to get you started with all the rules etc.
    http://www.ibike.org/encouragement/travel/bagregs.htm

    Are you flying into or out of Heathrow? Heathrow's got all sorts extra rules over and above everyone else ... for example, I can fly with two pieces of carry-on out of Canada, but when I fly out of Heathrow back to Canada, I can only have one piece of carry-on.

    And don't forget about the 62 inch limit on a bicycle box!

    So here's a question ... how are you planning to carry your helmet? I used to carry my helmet as carry-on dangling from my Carradice which was slung over my shoulder. I don't think I can do that this time. It may have to go into my bicycle box!

    It's a bit of a pain!

    I'm currently packing everything as I want it on the bicycle for the touring part of my trip to Europe to make sure I've got everything and that it all fits. Then I've got to unpack it all, and pack it so I can get it on the plane. <<sigh>>

  2. #2
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    The 62" rule stumps me. So there are bike boxes that come under that number?

    My packing problems are increased because I have a recumbent, requiring either one very large box, or two somewhat smaller boxes. I am using a regular bike box for everything but the frame, for which I am using a SporTube. I will have one and my wife will have the other. The upside is that I can pack everything in these two cases and not have luggage (I think). While packing I will use a scale to make sure I don't go over 50 pounds with either case. Who knows what the airline will think about one bike split between two cases.

    I can borrow a tandem case, in which my bike fits perfectly, but the stupid thing weighs 38 pounds empty!

    You can't fit your helmet in your bike box?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronsmithjunior View Post
    The 62" rule stumps me. So there are bike boxes that come under that number?
    Not unless you have a tiny frame and smaller wheels. A box for S&S-coupled bikes is close to 62" already and it isn't much bigger than a pair of 700C wheels side by side (about 25x25x10 inches).

  4. #4
    You need a new bike supcom's Avatar
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    You cannot fit a standard bike into a box measuring 62" length+height+width. If your airline has a 62" limit, you will have to pay the oversize fee. That's just one of the costs of doing the ride.

  5. #5
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Has anyone heard anything about cleats on shoes. I usually wear my cycling on the plane, but this time I'm having doubts about that plan.

    BTW - I double checked the 62 inch thing ... I think they set us up for failure on that one. When travelling with Air Canada, if you could get your bicycle into a 62 inch box (length + width + height), you would pay $50 for the privalege of having Air Canada transport your bicycle for you. However if you can't do the 62 inch thing, you HAVE TO keep the box size under 115 inches (length + width + height) or they won't let it on the plane. The charge for having a box between 62 inches and 115 inches is an additional $35 for a total of $85.

    Mine is 95 inches.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    The last time I looked, British Airways allowed 1 piece of "sports equipment" at no extra charge between North America and Europe. A bicycle is included as sports equipment and the 62" limit doesn't seem to apply to bicycles, skis, etc., or at least it didn't when I flew to London with them 3 years ago. BA seems to be the last airline that will transport a bicycle for free, they might be worth looking at for anyone who hasn't bought a ticket yet.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by markf View Post
    The last time I looked, British Airways allowed 1 piece of "sports equipment" at no extra charge between North America and Europe. A bicycle is included as sports equipment and the 62" limit doesn't seem to apply to bicycles, skis, etc., or at least it didn't when I flew to London with them 3 years ago. BA seems to be the last airline that will transport a bicycle for free, they might be worth looking at for anyone who hasn't bought a ticket yet.
    when I was researching flight options to Paris, I was mighty tempted by BA. They will allow a bike box to be treated as a piece of checked luggage if it's below 50 lbs. If it is between 50 and 98 lb.s then it will be treated as two pieces of checked luggage and you won't get charged if the rest of your gear is in carry-on. They did not have dimension limits.

    In the end, though, I went with my frequent-flyer airline since the flight wasn't that much more expensive even with the $75 excess handling charge, and I liked getting the miles.

    Machka, with regards to your various queries, since my bike weighs 28 lbs. I have already figured that I've lost the <50 lb. / 22 kg. battle and will just aim at getting my bike box under 70 lbs. / 32 kg -- which is my carrier's threshold before the handling charges get particularly nasty. So, I'm already planning on putting my helmet and shoes in the bike box and just having all of that travel with the bike. Assuming that there's still some room left under the weight ceiling, I might throw my Carradice Super C in with my tools, bento and map case. Then clothes, toiletries, bivy sack, books and various sundries go into my messenger bag / carry-on.

  8. #8
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markf View Post
    The last time I looked, British Airways allowed 1 piece of "sports equipment" at no extra charge between North America and Europe. A bicycle is included as sports equipment and the 62" limit doesn't seem to apply to bicycles, skis, etc., or at least it didn't when I flew to London with them 3 years ago. BA seems to be the last airline that will transport a bicycle for free, they might be worth looking at for anyone who hasn't bought a ticket yet.
    3 years ago, things were quite different. Bicycles flew free internationally back then (they only charged when you flew domestically). But as of January 2007, everything changed. Now all the airlines charge whether you fly domestically or internationally, and they are strict!

  9. #9
    ld-cyclist prestonjb's Avatar
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    Air Canada should not charge for a bicycle if it fits the 62 inch rule. Most of the airlines have a rule that they (now) charge around $100 each way for a bicycle ***unless*** it can fit into a 62 inch space.

    Unfortunatly the check in clerks don't know so if you tell them you have a bicycle in the box then they want to charge you... So I carry a copy of their web pages with me to show them the rule... Air Canada does not say correctly that a folding bike gets charged. Here they are assuming you got a bike friday folding which is tougher to fit into a 62 inch case without extra dissasembly (depending on model)... But if your bike can fit into a 62 inch case then it is treated as regular luggage.... (Hey it's not a bike it is bike parts...)

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