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Travel case for Greyhound use: hard or soft case?

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Travel case for Greyhound use: hard or soft case?

Old 08-23-05, 10:22 PM
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geeyoff
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Travel case for Greyhound use: hard or soft case?

Hi everybody. I'm thinking about wandering around the country via Greyhound buses for a month or so, and I'd want a travel case for my bike. It'll only get put into the cargo bays in buses; it won't get thrown onto airport conveyor belts or anything. Also, my bike is a Cannondale RoadWarrior 400, which is more or less a hybrid-style bike, so it's not a super-light, delicate performance road bike. Still, it's something I'd like to take care of.

What I'm hoping is that people here will reassure me that a cheaper, soft case will be perfectly sufficient for bus transportation of this kind of bike. I like saving money. If, however, I'm just totally off-base, and I really must shell out the extra money for a hard case, then please tell me so.

Here are a couple of soft cases that I'm thinking of:

Performance TransIt soft case

Nashbar bike transport bag

Thanks for your advice, whether it be supportive or brutal.
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Old 08-23-05, 10:45 PM
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Have you ridden Greyhound recently? Are you sure you want to do that?

I just returned from a trip on Greyhound myself ... not something I'd want to repeat anytime soon, especially alone!

You could probably get away with a soft-sided case, but you'll have to call Greyhound to make sure, because it is their decision, not yours. They could refuse to take the bicycle in any condition that doesn't meet with their standards, or they could refuse to take the bicycle at all. I travelled with a cardboard box, and that seemed to be OK.

Also be prepared for them to charge you at least $20 for the bicycle every time you board the bus, plus your ticket price of course.

And be prepared for them to treat your bicycle roughly. They don't seem to like the fact that it is on the bus, and every time you change busses (I went through about 4 bus changes in a fairly short distance), they will sling your bicycle off the bus and then sling it back on.

Good luck!
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Old 08-23-05, 11:01 PM
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My advise is take the train.

In my experience people who are in a hurry take an airplane, people who are desperate take Greyhound (or Hellhound as it is known in my household), and people who are in no hurry and want to sit back and relax, enjoying the scenery take Amtrak. Good Luck.
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Old 08-23-05, 11:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Ziemas
My advise is take the train.

In my experience people who are in a hurry take an airplane, people who are desperate take Greyhound (or Hellhound as it is known in my household), and people who are in no hurry and want to sit back and relax, enjoying the scenery take Amtrak. Good Luck.

I would agree, but the one problem with Amtrak is that not every station will allow you to load a bicycle on the train. In fact, I will be in Iowa in a week or so, and I wanted to take a train from there to Colorado. I called to find out what my closest connection would be which would allow me to load the bicycle ... and it was Omaha! 500 kms away!!

I argued with the lady on the phone asking how difficult it would be for me to bring the bicycle, in a box, right up to a train in any little station, and have them load it, but she told me they absolutely would not.

Unfortunately, I have to resort to taking Greyhound ... again.
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Old 08-24-05, 12:30 AM
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Nothing beats the protection of a hard case
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Old 08-24-05, 02:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
I would agree, but the one problem with Amtrak is that not every station will allow you to load a bicycle on the train. In fact, I will be in Iowa in a week or so, and I wanted to take a train from there to Colorado. I called to find out what my closest connection would be which would allow me to load the bicycle ... and it was Omaha! 500 kms away!!

I argued with the lady on the phone asking how difficult it would be for me to bring the bicycle, in a box, right up to a train in any little station, and have them load it, but she told me they absolutely would not.

Unfortunately, I have to resort to taking Greyhound ... again.
In my experience Amtrak has many rules that are only on paper. Most Amtrak workers are very helpful at the station or on the train.

When your are in Iowa why don't you stop at the train station before you buy a Hellhound ticket and ask if you can take your bike? You might get a different answer.
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Old 08-24-05, 06:19 AM
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No wonder Amtrak isn't doing too well.

Take a few months off and get around on your own power!
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Old 08-24-05, 06:29 AM
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greyhound isn't that bad, but they are not careful with luggage at all. bag handlers just throw things in as hard as they can and then dump the luggage out. but for the money, it can't be beat. amtrak is good too but soooo expensive (a one way ticket to nyc from boston costs like 60-100 depending on when you buy it, and a greyhound is like 25). and they dont really care what you have with you as long as it doesnt take up too much room.
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Old 08-25-05, 08:59 AM
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Yeah, I'd love to do the train thing, but a month-long pass for Amtrak is about $766, whereas the Greyhoud pass is more like $350 or so. I don't think I could swing that kind of difference no matter how badly I wanted it. :-(

I know that market economics and all that jazz is a really complicated thing, but I just can't help but think that if Amtrak lowered their fares and put a little money into advertising such an act, their ridership would flourish and they'd pull themselves out of the gigantic financial pit that they're in. It'd make a lot of people much happier... if only...
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Old 08-25-05, 11:24 AM
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What do you plan to do with the case (hard or soft) while you are tooling about enjoying the countryside? If you just use a cardboard box from the bus line or an LBS, you can toss it when you get to the next station. If you use a durable case, then you have to store it someplace and must return to the same place to retrieve it unless you mail it ahead.
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Old 08-26-05, 09:49 PM
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I see folks boarding Greyhounds who carry their suitcase all the way to bus and put it underneath themselves. When they get off, they remove it themselves. The Greyhound staff never touches their suitcase.

So, if you could get one of those cool Bike Friday bikes that fold up, into a standard size suitcase, you would be all set. Keep your other stuff in a backpack that you carry to your seat.
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Old 08-26-05, 10:35 PM
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Hard shell. They're going to throw a heck of a lot of junk on top, and they don't care if it's a bike or not.

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Old 08-27-05, 12:40 AM
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Soft shell is a waste of money, get the hard case; then for added protection buy some solid foam pipe insulation, cut to fit the frame tubes, forks and stays and then cover the frame tubes, forks and stays before putting in case; next wrap your loose items like pedals, seat, and handlebars with bubble wrap. This added protection will help prevent scratches from loose articles bouncing agains each other.
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Old 08-27-05, 12:41 AM
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yikes
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Old 08-27-05, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by froze
yikes

Exactly. There shouldn't even be a question about it!

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