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Flying with bike

Old 02-06-09, 04:16 PM
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Lou627
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Flying with bike

Ive been searching the forums about flying with a bike and found some good info, but I assume policies change all the time and was curious about charges from anyone whose flown recently. I spontaneously bought a plane ticket for a week in st criox (usvi) and would love to spend the week room free with the bike (would be tough without it). Anyone know the charges for american airlines currently? I dont mind paying 20 bucks for checked baggage but im nervous ill get surprised with an expensive charge for having a bike in a box. Thanks, Lou

Last edited by Lou627; 02-06-09 at 04:19 PM.
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Old 02-06-09, 04:31 PM
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Haven't flown with a bike for years, but it was fifty bucks back then and now that the airlines are charging $15 for regularly checked items, it's probably gone up.
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Old 02-06-09, 04:39 PM
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1. Look up your airline on the internet, and find the policy for flying with bicycles.

2. Read this site: http://www.ibike.org/encouragement/travel/bagregs.htm


If you're flying with American Airlines, for example, it looks like you'll have a $100 charge each way, plus this extra fee the US airlines are charging now.

https://www.aa.com/aa/i18nForward.do...eAllowance.jsp
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Old 02-06-09, 04:40 PM
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You can find out on your airline's web site, I googled, "American Airlines Baggage Bike"

http://www.aa.com/aa/i18nForward.do?...cialty%20Items

It's $100 for the bike $15 for the first checked bag, $25 for the next checked bag.

It used to be a lot less expensive. The current low price inside the US is Southwest Airlines. British Airways seems to be the last international bikes-fly-free airline.

Sorry to bear the bad news.

edit - oh i just read a bit more, they charge you a regular bag charge in addition, so if you have a bike and one bag its 100 + 15 +25, if you have another bag it's another 100. what a ripoff.
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Old 02-06-09, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by valygrl View Post
edit - oh i just read a bit more, they charge you a regular bag charge in addition, so if you have a bike and one bag its 100 + 15 +25, if you have another bag it's another 100. what a ripoff.
That's been common policy for years among most airlines ... you're limited to two checked bags, and in the case of a cyclist, one bag is our bicycle box, and one bag is our clothing, etc.

Air Canada charges $175 for a third bag.
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Old 02-06-09, 05:00 PM
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jeez, thanks for the info and bumming me out
this has me hopeful though... (from the aa page valygrl found, thank you)

"$100 in addition to the applicable checked baggage charge, based on the number of checked bags.
Exception: If bicycle and container are less than 62 dimensional inches and under 50 lbs., the bike is charged the applicable baggage charge for the 1st checked bag."

I will only have my carry-on and my bike box. im going to see if I can keep it within these specs and keep it as my 1st checked bag. Good stuff thanks guys

Also, im going to post a bicycling st croix thread to find out how the island is. Let me know if youve been.
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Old 02-06-09, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Lou627 View Post
jeez, thanks for the info and bumming me out
this has me hopeful though... (from the aa page valygrl found, thank you)

"$100 in addition to the applicable checked baggage charge, based on the number of checked bags.
Exception: If bicycle and container are less than 62 dimensional inches and under 50 lbs., the bike is charged the applicable baggage charge for the 1st checked bag."

I will only have my carry-on and my bike box. im going to see if I can keep it within these specs and keep it as my 1st checked bag. Good stuff thanks guys

Also, im going to post a bicycling st croix thread to find out how the island is. Let me know if youve been.
Unless you've got a very, very small bicycle, or a folder, you won't get it under 62 inches. That's 62 inches in total ... height + width + length.
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Old 02-06-09, 05:11 PM
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bikes bigger than most... 60cm LHT. Ill stop by the lbs tonight and measure some boxes but youre right, probably wont work. I work for an air courier company, so Im going to check out some options with the frieght fowarders we have accounts with, mabey figure something out. Thanks again
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Old 02-06-09, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Lou627 View Post
If bicycle and container are less than 62 dimensional inches and under 50 lbs., the bike is charged the applicable baggage charge for the 1st checked bag.
This only means that if you have a folder or a S&S torque-coupler equipped SINGLE bike, they won't ding you with the bike charge if you tell them you've got a bike inside the case. Even the Ritchey Breakaway case exceeds the "62 dimensional inches" (equivalent to 26x26x10, the size of the S&S cases).
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Old 02-06-09, 06:01 PM
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I guess I got special treatment with Air Canada when I flew about a month ago. Took my bike in a SERFAS hardcase as my 1st piece of luggage and they charged me $50 for it being oversized (I had called in and reserved space for my "sporting equipment", and was charged $100 for a 3rd piece of luggage. That was from Toronto to Vancouver, connecting to Auckland. Once in Auckland I was charged an additional $30 for the bike box and nothing for my 3rd piece as I connected through Wellington to Dunedin.

I'd say call ahead and reserve space on the plane, or just tell them you have it and then be as nice as possible to the clerk working. I may have got a discount because the lady took forever and messed up the forms multiple times, but I got my bike to the other side of the world for relatively cheap!
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Old 02-06-09, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Thisisit View Post
I guess I got special treatment with Air Canada when I flew about a month ago. Took my bike in a SERFAS hardcase as my 1st piece of luggage and they charged me $50 for it being oversized (I had called in and reserved space for my "sporting equipment", and was charged $100 for a 3rd piece of luggage. That was from Toronto to Vancouver, connecting to Auckland. Once in Auckland I was charged an additional $30 for the bike box and nothing for my 3rd piece as I connected through Wellington to Dunedin.

I'd say call ahead and reserve space on the plane, or just tell them you have it and then be as nice as possible to the clerk working. I may have got a discount because the lady took forever and messed up the forms multiple times, but I got my bike to the other side of the world for relatively cheap!
Actually, if you're flying Air Canada all the way, and you've just got your bicycle in a box, and one other bag, most likely all you'll be charged is $50 each way .... that's without calling and reserving anything.

Unless you're flying out of Heathrow (London), in which case they may charge you more.
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Old 02-06-09, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by valygrl View Post
British Airways seems to be the last international bikes-fly-free airline.
I flew to/from Vietnam on United around Thanksgiving 2008 and wasn't charged for my bicycle. I had looked up United's policies which I think said $200 for International so I sortof expected to be charged. I packed everything so my bicycle was one piece of luggage in a box and the other was a large duffel that contained panniers.

It used to always be that on flights starting or ending in US, that the bicycle was one piece of luggage and for whatever reason they were still following that policy last Thanksgiving (and I didn't complain ). Last time I flew domestically on United was March 2008 and it cost me $85 each way for the bike...
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Old 02-06-09, 07:15 PM
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is it possible to ship bike via a package service for cheaper? I know that my family decided it was cheaper to ship their huge boxes full of clothes and gifts rather than take them on the plane with them. They were able to specify dates, etc to the shipping company, and notify the hotel of their package just in case there were any delays.
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Old 02-06-09, 07:20 PM
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According to the site I posted in my first post here, there are actually several airlines that don't charge for bicycles.

http://www.ibike.org/encouragement/travel/bagregs.htm

The US ones seem to charge the most, but there are several that are free. Thai Airways is one ... I don't believe that Rowan had to pay anything when he flew with them from Australia to London.
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Old 02-07-09, 04:56 AM
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We booked with Lufthansa and flew from Edmonton to Mumbai through Toronto and Frankfurt. Lufthansa's charges $150 a bike a ticket, air Canada is $50 (a total of $700 for two of us). When we booked our flights, there was no charge with Lufthansa, they changed ther policy after we bought our tickets but before we left. You never know with airlines, they change policies all the time.

But since our flight was all on star alliance, we paid the $50 to get on the Air Canada flight and nothing more, our bikes arrived to India without any problems. We lucked out.
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Old 02-07-09, 08:05 AM
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Last I heard Southwest is 50.00 each way. Amtrak trains are only $15.00
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Old 02-07-09, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by balto charlie View Post
Last I heard Southwest is 50.00 each way.
$50, 80 linear inches.
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