Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Anyone ever gone overseas vacation, bought a bike to ride there, and brought it home?

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Anyone ever gone overseas vacation, bought a bike to ride there, and brought it home?

Old 04-11-22, 06:08 PM
  #1  
MidasTouch
Member
Thread Starter
 
MidasTouch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 27
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Anyone ever gone overseas vacation, bought a bike to ride there, and brought it home?

Anyone ever gone overseas vacation and bought a bike to ride there and brought it home?

Ive been trying to plan a 2-3mo overseas trip to cycling and check out the area for moving to and thinking it would be a lot less stress for me to fly out with just my clothes and gear and buy a new bike there, ride the piss out of it and then buy a hard bike case and bring it back home with me. Anyone done this?



Nervous about flying in general, especially over seas and especially with an 8k$ bike. if i fly out there without one it would be a lot less stress only having to worry aobut the ride back, and worst case if something happens i dont be without a bike while im on vacation because they lost mine in the multiple lay overs....



thoughts?
MidasTouch is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 06:30 PM
  #2  
Bosco13
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 57
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 28 Times in 16 Posts
I would look at what you'd have to pay for a new bike where you are going, including any extra fees for shipping/bringing back. I've found for most things that they are cheaper in the US than overseas. If money is no object, and bikes are available where you are going. Then go for it.
Bosco13 is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 07:40 PM
  #3  
surveyor6
Senior Member
 
surveyor6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Houston area
Posts: 246

Bikes: 1961 Higgins Flightliner

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Liked 100 Times in 69 Posts
I have oft daydreamed about flying to Italy, buying a Bianchi there and bringing it back on the plane.
I never actually planned it out.
So... I took the family to Ireland and bought a lot of Guinness. We did rent bikes there for a while.
Alas, I have still never taken a "fitness" vacation.
surveyor6 is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 07:44 PM
  #4  
qwaalodge
Banned.
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Location: Kingdom of Qwaa
Posts: 307
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 211 Post(s)
Liked 78 Times in 61 Posts
Buy a cheap but quality bike at your destination, ride it with care then give it as a gift to the bug-eyed kid or adult who keeps eyeballing your bike when your vacation is over and you're going back home.

Not only you have saved yourself a lot of trouble, you also would have made a loyal friend if you ever decide moving to that place or your work takes you back to that place.
qwaalodge is offline  
Likes For qwaalodge:
Old 04-11-22, 08:20 PM
  #5  
N2deep
Full Member
 
N2deep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 201
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Liked 88 Times in 57 Posts
I bought a Tern Link 7 on my last trip to China. Alibaba and a few friends helped, easy purchase and it was shipped directly to a friends apartment. The price was significantly less than the US advertised price and saved miles of walking everyday. You need to be aware that they sell fake copies of almost anything made, including Chinese products, so having native friends helped a ton.. Research is imperative to getting a great buy and not a fake. I also bought a cheap suitcase, disassembled the bike and shipped it home as airline baggage. My granddaughters loved the bike.. .. .

Have fun..
N2deep is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 08:33 PM
  #6  
Wildwood
Veteran, Pacifist
 
Wildwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Seattle area
Posts: 12,196

Bikes: Bikes??? Thought this was social media?!?

Mentioned: 270 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3359 Post(s)
Liked 3,243 Times in 1,584 Posts
Years ago, I was scheduled to travel to England & Netherlands.
Trip canceled - medical reasons.
Bummed
Bought beautiful Eddy Merckx vintage from Belgium.
Damaged in shipment.
Bummed & burned (somewhat).

Not everything works out as planned.
Wildwood is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 08:39 PM
  #7  
PacificSpray
Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 25
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Yes. Just before covid, my wife and I flew from NZ to Raleigh NC, where Dr. Yan delivered two Downturn folders with panniers to our hotel (pre-arranged) and we cycled locally for a bit then to the Outer Banks. The Covid outbreak prevented continuation of our tour and we flew back to NZ with our purchases. Our sentiments and motivations were somewhat similar to OP's. Post 9/11 flying becomes more onerous as I get older. If not for covid, we intended flying from Raleigh to Europe before returning home. Aside from that, it worked out well. We 'wanted' folders anyhow. Oh, and we also picked up a tent and stove from REI to make it even easier on the outward flight. We incurred no extra costs flying back with everything.
Edit: *Downtube
PacificSpray is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 08:42 PM
  #8  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 36,005
Mentioned: 204 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16546 Post(s)
Liked 11,476 Times in 5,544 Posts
I’ve flown to Europe with a bike three times. One trip was for a seven week tour of Andalucia. Not really stressful.

Finding a suitable bike that your gear is compatible with them trying to find a hard case at the end sounds much more stressful.
indyfabz is offline  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 04-11-22, 09:40 PM
  #9  
Litespud
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Chapel Hill NC
Posts: 1,683

Bikes: 2000 Litespeed Vortex Chorus 10, 1995 DeBernardi Cromor S/S

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 645 Post(s)
Liked 793 Times in 445 Posts
Originally Posted by MidasTouch View Post
Anyone ever gone overseas vacation and bought a bike to ride there and brought it home?

Ive been trying to plan a 2-3mo overseas trip to cycling and check out the area for moving to and thinking it would be a lot less stress for me to fly out with just my clothes and gear and buy a new bike there, ride the piss out of it and then buy a hard bike case and bring it back home with me. Anyone done this?



Nervous about flying in general, especially over seas and especially with an 8k$ bike. if i fly out there without one it would be a lot less stress only having to worry aobut the ride back, and worst case if something happens i dont be without a bike while im on vacation because they lost mine in the multiple lay overs....



thoughts?
I'm going to be flying to Dublin for a few weeks in June/July, and I'm thinking of bringing my bike. Not interested in buying another bike locally, and all the rental options I've found are hybrids and various flat-bar options. I'll be staying beside the Wicklow Mountains, where I used to ride as a teenager on an old steel 6sp Peugeot (long since at one with the Universe) and I would love to tackle the same hills on the decent bike I have now. Torn between buying a hard case and flying with it, or exploring something like BikeFlights and having it shipped over. I'm leaning toward a case, because (i) I like breaking down and reassembling my own bike (BikeFlights seems to require a shop doing the breakdown/rebuild), and (ii) as I'm approaching retirement, I intend to do more of this, therefore a case might be a good investment.
I'm not wild about the idea of getting a big bloody bike case from Dublin Airport across the city to my final destination, but it's a small sacrifice when I get to use my own bike.
On a separate but related note, my dream vacation would be to fly into somewhere in Europe with my bike, rent/buy an old station wagon, then drive down through France, Spain and Italy for a few months, stopping to ride for a few days, getting in as many iconic routes as possible, then moving on to the next spot.

Last edited by Litespud; 04-11-22 at 09:46 PM.
Litespud is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 10:51 PM
  #10  
pennpaul
Full Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Maryland
Posts: 368

Bikes: Diamondback Haanjo Trail, Fuji Team Road

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 160 Post(s)
Liked 68 Times in 46 Posts
My concern would be getting to your vacation spot and not being able to find a bike.

Some guys in my group have bought used (but excellent) bikes on the local market but only because we're friends with a connected local and they waited months to find a bike their size and in their price range. The bike shops have limited stock or not the right size.

Not sure what size bike you ride, but many of my expat friends are riding >56cm frames but the average rider here is 5'8" or shorter so the available frames run small.

If you're based in the US, VATs can be high, too, overseas. The tax in our current place is 11% whereas when we lived in the Middle East, it was 17%. Europe has VATs in the 20% range. Asia can be lower than the US, but sometimes it's higher.
pennpaul is offline  
Old 04-11-22, 10:54 PM
  #11  
50PlusCycling
Senior Member
 
50PlusCycling's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 719
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 345 Post(s)
Liked 332 Times in 195 Posts
On a vacation to Hawaii, I found an old Schwinn 5 speed cruiser on Craigslist. It cost an extra $175 to fly it home, but it was well worth it.
50PlusCycling is offline  
Old 04-12-22, 07:30 AM
  #12  
GhostRider62
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Posts: 3,069
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1798 Post(s)
Liked 1,487 Times in 947 Posts
Bought a Dawes Super Galaxy overseas about 40 years ago, rode it all over Europe. Disassembled and put it in a cardboard box, handed it over to the airline, and no problems.
GhostRider62 is offline  
Old 04-12-22, 07:46 AM
  #13  
joesch
Senior Member
 
joesch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Hotel CA / DFW
Posts: 1,392

Bikes: 83 Colnago Super, 87 50th Daccordi, 79 & 87 Guerciotti's, 90s DB/GT Mtn Bikes, 90s Colnago Master and Titanio, 96 Serotta Colorado TG, 95/05 Colnago C40/C50, 06 DbyLS TI, 08 Lemond Filmore FG SS, 12 Cervelo R3, 20/15 Surly Stragler & Steamroller

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 465 Post(s)
Liked 520 Times in 336 Posts
Originally Posted by MidasTouch View Post
Anyone ever gone overseas vacation and bought a bike to ride there and brought it home?

Ive been trying to plan a 2-3mo overseas trip to cycling and check out the area for moving to and thinking it would be a lot less stress for me to fly out with just my clothes and gear and buy a new bike there, ride the piss out of it and then buy a hard bike case and bring it back home with me. Anyone done this?



Nervous about flying in general, especially over seas and especially with an 8k$ bike. if i fly out there without one it would be a lot less stress only having to worry aobut the ride back, and worst case if something happens i dont be without a bike while im on vacation because they lost mine in the multiple lay overs....



thoughts?
Depends where your going ? and what kind of bike your looking for ?
Recommend a classic road bike, not a 8K bike, but that would change my advice.
If UK, DK, NL, IT then there are lots of nice classics for deals. Many such dealers where you can even buy a bike and ride it there and ship it back (not sure if this is cheaper than taking back on plane but I do know its under $150 since I have purchased several bikes for NL. There are many sellers from the countries I noted above that sell on 36@y and www sites so you could choose and buy now and pickup upon arrival. Im suspect that LBS would even help you with the return shipping.
joesch is offline  
Old 04-12-22, 07:49 AM
  #14  
GhostRider62
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Posts: 3,069
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1798 Post(s)
Liked 1,487 Times in 947 Posts
Shipping a whole bike overseas by common carrier is super expensive.

Taking it on the plane with you is the cheapest and easiest......
GhostRider62 is offline  
Likes For GhostRider62:
Old 04-12-22, 07:15 PM
  #15  
SpeedyBlueBiker
Full Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Redmond, WA & Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 393

Bikes: 1999 Giant ATX MTB, 2002 Lemond Zurich, 2018 Fuji Transonic 2.3, 2019 Specialized Tarmac Disc Expert

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 108 Post(s)
Liked 208 Times in 135 Posts
Originally Posted by MidasTouch View Post
Anyone ever gone overseas vacation and bought a bike to ride there and brought it home?
Ive been trying to plan a 2-3mo overseas trip to cycling and check out the area for moving to and thinking it would be a lot less stress for me to fly out with just my clothes and gear and buy a new bike there, ride the piss out of it and then buy a hard bike case and bring it back home with me. Anyone done this?

Nervous about flying in general, especially over seas and especially with an 8k$ bike. if i fly out there without one it would be a lot less stress only having to worry aobut the ride back, and worst case if something happens i dont be without a bike while im on vacation because they lost mine in the multiple lay overs....thoughts?
It might be a little helpful if you listed the country or countries that you are thinking about moving to. There might be someone on this forum that lives there or has spent significant time there that could give you more useful information.
Potential problems are that you might not be able to find the right bike in your size. Or they don't have it in stock but can order it for you but will take three months to arrive. Will the bike be cheaper, about the same, or cost a whole lot more in the place you are going to? The same goes with buying a hard case or soft case to pack your bicycle in. Will they have a bike case in the place that you are going to? Will they have to order it? Maybe you can order on Amazon, Lazada, or Alibaba and have it delivered? If you take a brand new bike or a used bike will that country make you pay duty (tax) on it? What will airlines charge for taking a bike on the plane as oversized luggage? (US carriers generally make you pay much more than foreign airlines, at least in my experience)
I have traveled internationally for both work and leisure as well as lived overseas over the past 35+ years. I have traveled both with bikes and without. I've used hard cases, soft cases, and no cases. Personally I like hard cases the best because they have wheels and are easier to move around. The bad thing about hard cases is the wheels can easily break. Soft cases are lighter but often don't have wheels or only wheels on one end. Believe me, you want wheels on all four corners. Your back and arms will thank you for that.
SpeedyBlueBiker is offline  
Old 04-13-22, 12:20 PM
  #16  
thumpism 
Bikes are okay, I guess.
 
thumpism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 8,458

Bikes: Waterford Paramount Touring, Giant CFM-2, Raleigh Sports 3-speeds in M23 & L23, Schwinn Cimarron oddball build, Marin Palisades Trail dropbar conversion, Nishiki Cresta GT

Mentioned: 62 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2441 Post(s)
Liked 1,708 Times in 1,174 Posts
I flew to Amsterdam in '74 and bought a Batavus Tour de l'Europe, about Raleigh Grand Prix quality, for my tour de l'Europe and rode it for five months and then brought it back with me unboxed on the flight home. Five years later I flew back with the same Batavus (upgraded and boxed) for five more months and brought it home unboxed again. Traveled fine each time and I think it cost me nothing as accompanied baggage. I'm sure things have changed since but if I were inclined to try it again I would not hesitate to do so.
thumpism is offline  
Old 04-13-22, 12:34 PM
  #17  
TomM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Ville des Lumičres
Posts: 1,036

Bikes: Surly SteamRoller

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 41 Times in 25 Posts
I am in the process of moving to Paris and weighing my bike options. My original thought was to sell my bikes here and buy one in Paris but I am finding that US brands in the EU carry a premium in price if available at all. At this point I just might bring my Steamroller.
TomM is offline  
Old 04-13-22, 12:36 PM
  #18  
burnthesheep
Newbie racer
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Posts: 3,373

Bikes: Propel, red is faster

Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1566 Post(s)
Liked 1,533 Times in 953 Posts
RDU to CDG direct, larger hard case with rollers. Hatchback 4-door cute-yute vehicle. I rented the specific model because I looked them up to make sure the case fit the rear hatch. Drove to Nancy. Assemble, rode daily to commute for work and rode in the small mountains on the weekend.

Case was close on weight due to me shipping different extra tires and such. I put the rollers inside my check baggage while dropping the case off.

It wasn't THAT bad and a hard case is pretty secure for transport if you do the whole bubble wrap or pool noodles thing. Also, use a skewer in the fork and dropout even without the wheel to provide another protection point for crushes.

Otherwise, use Bikeflights to ship it ahead and ship it back. More expensive but don't have to cart it in a rental or thru an airport.

I frankly had a lot harder time finding rental road bikes for that part of France than I would have thought. I emailed a lot of shops and places and only came across one or two larger outfits that rented decent stuff and it was $$$$$ and also a 100% value of bike deposit.

One minor thing to consider, I got lucky, first ride I laid bike down and bent the RD. Luckily bent it back by hand fine. But include spare screws and spare hanger as it's such a common issue and could ruin a whole trip over a $5 part.
burnthesheep is offline  
Old 05-10-22, 06:57 PM
  #19  
sovende
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Western WI (USA)
Posts: 550

Bikes: TNTL (Too numerous to list)

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 115 Posts
Back in the mid-90s, I was stationed at the U.S. Army facility in Vicenza, Italy. While there, my in-laws came for a visit and my F-I-L shipped his pretty nice Trek(can’t remember the model) road bike in a custom shipping container in the baggage hold of the plane. Can’t remember the cost (if he even told me) but quite sure, knowing my F-I-L, it was the most economical method. Things were different in those days and the airlines weren’t “nickel and dime”ing air passengers like they do now. Had he purchased an Italian bike to be brought home, there may have been some “duty” issues with U.S. Customs.
sovende is offline  
Old 05-10-22, 11:06 PM
  #20  
Atlas Shrugged
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 982
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 662 Post(s)
Liked 777 Times in 377 Posts
When comparing prices most European countries have a Value Added Tax (VAT) embedded in the retail price usually in the mid 20 percent range. These taxes can be credited back when leaving the country as a tourist. Something to look into when considering.
Atlas Shrugged is offline  
Old 05-11-22, 03:51 AM
  #21  
njkayaker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 13,570
Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3759 Post(s)
Liked 1,043 Times in 732 Posts
Originally Posted by Litespud View Post
(BikeFlights seems to require a shop doing the breakdown/rebuild)
???

No, they don't.


https://www.bikeflights.com/pack
njkayaker is offline  
Old 05-11-22, 07:27 AM
  #22  
Flip Flop Rider
Senior Member
 
Flip Flop Rider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: South Carolina Upstate
Posts: 2,069

Bikes: 2010 Fuji Absolute 3.0 1994 Trek 850

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 750 Post(s)
Liked 538 Times in 308 Posts
have never seen a bike that costs 8k
Flip Flop Rider is offline  
Old 05-11-22, 08:50 AM
  #23  
base2 
Doesn't brain good.
 
base2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,369

Bikes: 5 good ones, and the occasional project.

Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1301 Post(s)
Liked 1,001 Times in 585 Posts
My spouse & I scoured Craigslist Amsterdam for a bike to purchase before our trip there. We arranged for & bought them the day the plane landed. Rode the dickens out of them & during the course of our trip discovered that the hotel bartender had no bike of his own. Before we left, we handed him the keys to both bikes, locks, & showed him the rack outside they were attached to. He comp'ed our entire food/drink bill. The bikes basically paid for themselves.

...




As to the comment above about paying import duties upon return to the US: I've never heard of such a thing. Personal property is personal property. Local taxes were already paid. The customs declaration form is at best the honor system. They don't know, nor do they care how/when you acquired your personal items or how many times it'd been in/out & in/out & in/out of the country again. Can you imagine paying duties on that half-tube of toothpaste & touristy t-shirt you bought while there? Where would they draw the line? How would they track each passengers list of personal belongings? Exactly. Did you buy premium art or are you smuggling jewels? If not, don't worry about it.
__________________
I shouldn't have to "make myself more visible;" Drivers should just stop running people over.

Car dependency is a tax.
base2 is offline  
Old 05-11-22, 10:05 AM
  #24  
philbob57
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Chicago North Shore
Posts: 2,163

Bikes: frankenbike based on MKM frame

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 657 Post(s)
Liked 484 Times in 303 Posts
Personal property most definitely can be taxed on entry to the US. The thing to remember is that a bike you bought for $n,000 in Europe is now a used bike worth far less than the purchase price, so it will most likely be valued in a way that avoids taxation. (I think you can bring in $800 in bike stuff without paying duties.)
philbob57 is offline  
Old 05-11-22, 03:23 PM
  #25  
sovende
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Western WI (USA)
Posts: 550

Bikes: TNTL (Too numerous to list)

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 115 Posts
Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
Personal property most definitely can be taxed on entry to the US. The thing to remember is that a bike you bought for $n,000 in Europe is now a used bike worth far less than the purchase price, so it will most likely be valued in a way that avoids taxation. (I think you can bring in $800 in bike stuff without paying duties.)
Another consideration, for those bringing their own bike with them on a trip to Europe, is being able to prove that you did so! This is especially true if you bring a European made bike. Perhaps best to contact U.S. Customs & Border Protection before your trip.
sovende is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.