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Old 01-31-14, 08:32 PM   #1
badgnome
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List of Countries where can take your bike on the train

I only know of the US and Canada for this and was hoping this was a common practce. Looking to do a bike/train tour and this could help me decide where to go.
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Old 02-01-14, 02:20 AM   #2
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In my experience:

Australia, just about all of Europe, Britain, and Taiwan (but in the luggage van).

Japan (or at least some parts of it such as Hokkaido) was problematic.

We have decided that folding bikes are in our world travels future. Bike Fridays. The fold-down might take some time, but it will save money and be more convenient, in our estimation.
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Old 02-01-14, 02:57 AM   #3
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I can only speak for Italy. With the bike in a bag you can take any train with no problem, if you want to get the whole bike on the train you have to search the timetables and see if there is a bike sign among the services, unfortunately none of our high speed trains offers that opportunity, and sometimes even if the service is listed the dedicated racks are missing. So carrying bikes on trains is possible but it could do better. Austria and Germany are much better organized for example
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Old 02-01-14, 04:11 AM   #4
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I've taken a bike on train in Thailand, Malaysia and Russia. The latter was a bit of a pain (only certain trains have baggage cars and one has to make several stops to make payment, drop bike off, etc) but it worked.
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Old 02-01-14, 06:18 AM   #5
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Australia - depends. I've done 25 cycle tours in the state of Victoria and I still get confused by the exact rules. Generally you can take your bike on, but sometimes you're meant to book it in advance, sometimes it goes in a special carriage, sometimes they'll actually add a special luggage carriage to the train if your group is big enough. The NSW trains require you to book it, pay for it, and pack it in a bike box.
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Old 02-01-14, 06:37 AM   #6
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List of Countries where can take your bike on the train

Sweden Rail is not bike friendly.
In the summer bikes are allowed on a few departures on a couple of routes. Otherwise forget it

Germany has a good system
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Old 02-01-14, 06:49 AM   #7
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France is pretty good. However, there are several types of trains in France and the situation can vary. It's a good idea to check whether or not the train you want will take a bicycle in advance. You can check by going to a train station and picking up a little route brochure. Most train stations will have lots of those. If bicycles are allowed, there will be a little symbol above the time.

In some cases you can just roll on ... in others it's a good idea to book the bicycle. And prices will vary.


In Switzerland, you will need to book the bicycle, and it will be a bit expensive. I

n the UK, it is highly recommended to book the bicycle, especially during the summer when there might be lots of people travelling by train and bicycle, and limited bicycle space. We ran into that difficulty in Scotland and ended up staying in a particular area an extra day because we couldn't book the bicycles onto the train until the next day.

Last edited by Machka; 02-01-14 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 02-01-14, 10:09 AM   #8
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Did So in Poland ..

my experience was in '91, though i stood it up in the end of the corridor .

Last edited by fietsbob; 07-01-14 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 02-01-14, 10:50 AM   #9
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In Thailand and Sri Lanka, it was easy to bring a bike on a train.

In many countries with limited passenger rail service, it is often easy to take on a bike on buses. I found this to be true, for example, in Mexico, Chile, Ecuador, and Tunisia.
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Old 02-01-14, 11:51 AM   #10
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Thanks for all the replies. This helps me decided where to tour in the future.

I just found a page indicating that Vietnam is pretty bike/rail friendly:

http://travellingtwo.com/resources/1...ing-in-vietnam
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Old 02-01-14, 12:35 PM   #11
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Not all trains in Canada accept bikes on board, only the ones with a bagage car.
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Old 02-01-14, 01:06 PM   #12
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Italy, Switzerland, Austria. I would imagine most places in Europe. They are far ahead of the US in being bike friendly.

But even bike crazy Italy has some rules. You can only use RORO on Regionale trains.
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Old 02-01-14, 03:21 PM   #13
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years back .. group trip.. Paris To Bern CH, we surrendered the bikes 2 days early at the French station
and SNCF shipped them on an Overnight train, we took the TGV to Lyon, then a local to Bern..

the bikes were there when we arrived.
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Old 02-01-14, 06:39 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by badgnome View Post
I only know of the US and Canada for this and was hoping this was a common practce. Looking to do a bike/train tour and this could help me decide where to go.
Most places in Europe take bikes, but sorting through which trains and if you need reservations can be daunting.

That said, I've taken a bike on a train in most every country between Croatia and England, Sweden and Spain, and only once was I denied the train I wanted.
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Old 02-02-14, 12:15 AM   #15
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In Switzerland, you will need to book the bicycle, and it will be a bit expensive.
Fortunately, this is not always true. Bookings are only required on the ICN trains (the fast city-to-city trains) from 21 March to 31 October. Almost all other trains accept bikes (mostly self loading) without a booking. Costs vary, but it's never more than CHF 18.- for a day card. Otherwise, for short journeys you can just buy a regular ticket for the bike. More information is here.
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Old 02-02-14, 09:41 AM   #16
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I was riding from UK to Budapest last Summer. Got to Lille, France and decided I wanted to be in Tours, France to start to ride the EuroVelo 6 route along the Loire without peddling for days. So, I rode into the huge Lille train station and bought a ticket for me and bike right there (about $110) and rode an hour later to Tours, only having to get off the train, ride across Paris through about 5 million tourists to another train station, and put the bike on another train. On both trains I rolled the fully loaded beast into a luggage area shared with baby carriages in the same car as me. A lady conductor helped me load the heavy bike. While not TGV, the trains were very fast. Got on in Lille at 11 am, got off in Tours at 3 pm. This was a great adventure for me. I had not planned this, and it all worked out. You can plan all this if that is your style, me I like to let it flow. This time it all worked out.
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Old 02-04-14, 03:02 PM   #17
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Not Spain. What a nightmare.
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Old 02-04-14, 03:19 PM   #18
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+1 on not Sweden. At least that's the official line with Swedish Rail, long distance buses too. I've seen bikes in their trains on a couple of trips, but maybe those guys were just lucky and got away with it.

For Finland, depending on the train, it's one of the following:
- straight in through the doors (commuter trains, outside of rush hour)
- baggage car (old long distance trains)
- designated bike stands (newer InterCity trains, booking in advance is highly recommended as there are only a couple of stands per train)
- no go (the Pendolino high speed service)

Another thing, it's quite easy to take your bike in Finnish long distance buses. Their geographical coverage is far better than rail.

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Old 02-04-14, 09:29 PM   #19
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Not Spain. What a nightmare.
I had no problem taking my bike on the "media distancia" and "Circania" trains in Spain. The long distance trains are another story, however. Also, it's easy roll on/roll off service on the narrow gauge FEVE trains in northern Spain.
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Old 02-04-14, 11:43 PM   #20
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INDIA

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Old 02-05-14, 02:13 AM   #21
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NZ, not that we have a lot of trains.
It pays to book in advance because sometimes its limited to 4 bikes.
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Old 02-05-14, 02:24 AM   #22
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Sweden.

Pretty much only on the smaller trains/railway companies. In Southern Sweden it works well as you just buy an extra ticket for your bike (like $5).
On SJ trains, which is the biggest/official railway company they have pretty much rebuilt all their cargo space into bars and other stupid stuff. You can bring your bike, if you wrap it up in something.
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Old 02-05-14, 02:28 AM   #23
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Did So in Poland ..
Not all types of trains allow to take a bike, especially the fastest ones (EC, IC), but for the big group of trains called TLK there is a bike couch during most of the year. Sometimes there might be a surprise, when such coach is not present. There you can hang the bike and sit next door. Some regional trains don't have such facility, but you can still take the bike with you. The general cost of the bike ticket is on the level of 4€, but in many cases in local trains it is free of charge. It is always good to be in the first or last couch and leave the bike there (secured). The national railway website www.pkp.pl (hope should be in english too) allows to search for connections and the bike is one of the filters.
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Old 02-05-14, 03:17 AM   #24
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In the Netherlands you can take a bike on the train (except during rush hour), day ticket cost 6 euro.
In Belgium also you can take a bike on the train.
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Old 02-05-14, 05:42 AM   #25
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Sweden.

On SJ trains, which is the biggest/official railway company they have pretty much rebuilt all their cargo space into bars and other stupid stuff. You can bring your bike, if you wrap it up in something.
Unless things have changed recently, the policy is that you can take all that you can carry on, IF there is room for your baggage. That's a big IF as it is up to the train conductor. The "normal" trains have somewhat more room than the faster X2000 trains. I have gotten away with a bike with wheels taken off wrapped in a tarp, and a small backpack, but if you have panniers as well, it could get very dicey.

Unfortunately in recent years at terminal stations the train doors stay locked until a few minutes before departure. This makes it much harder to get your cumbersome stuff out of the way in time...Not to mention waiting on the platform in the freezing cold in winter!

But hey! It's probably all for our own security and comfort... innit!
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