This fall I'm hoping to embark on a project where I go around the States (and parts of Canada) to blog about certain design programs in various universities. This will be a multi-month endeavor. I'll also be couchsurfing along the way to cut down costs (freshly graduated from college) I'll be starting out from the east coast and make my way to the Pacific NW (I'll be going all over the map).
I don't have a car and even though I have a license, I'm under 25 so renting is pretty expensive. Plus I'm reeeeally out of practice when it comes to driving...so I'd prefer not to drive for my own safety and for the safety of others on the road. So I thought I'd take the Greyhound for most of the trip (some Amtrak, maybe one or two flights for the tough spots) but I'd really like to bring a bike with me for that added mobility factor. (Not touring because I've never done it, don't have a touring bike, and will be traveling by myself) I'd just be bringing one bag with me though so ideally, I could hop off the greyhound with my bike and bike to wherever I can with all my stuff with me.
I skimmed over the Greyhound policy on bikes and it seems that as long as it doesn't look like a bike, they won't charge you extra.
Now, I know that Greyhound is probably not going to treat my bike with gentle love and care when they sling it on and off the bus. But for those who have done the trip or can sort of visualize what I'm going for here--do you recommend a folding bike? do you think I can get away with a soft case (Ideally if I take the bike out of the case I want to fold it up and put it away in my backpack so I can ride with all my stuff to my next destination)?
Or since I do have basic bicycle mechanic skills, I could bring this 70s Schwinn that I have. I don't have a folding bike so I'd have to buy it...and I am on a budget. I don't really mind if the Schwinn gets a little beat up since I got it for free and I changed out the cables and overhauled the hubs so it's in pretty decent shape as of right now. I was thinking I could maybe disassemble the bike and then wrap it up in a soft bag....but I'm worried about the wheels getting crushed under luggage.
Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated!!