Author Topic: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?  (Read 4155 times)

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Offline NCMJ

If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« on: August 03, 2011, 08:16:14 pm »
This must be a common problem, but my search turned up nothing.   My son is crossing the USA east to west and should finish in Seattle.  We will fly him back to Charlotte NC and then drive to Boston,  but how do we get the bike back?  One-way airfare is quite reasonable for him.   I figure he will need to track down a cardboard box to pack the bike (local bike shops being the obvious source),  but then can it be checked as luggage on the plane or shipped via UPS or greyhound?  What do most people do?  Does it just go on the plane as oversized baggage with an extra fee?  Obviously I haven't asked the airline yet.  I don't want him to sell or otherwise dispose of the bike because it has sentimental value, which will only be enhanced by this trip.   :)

FredHiltz

  • Guest
Re: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2011, 08:23:06 pm »
This must be a common problem, but my search turned up nothing.xx I figure he will need to track down a cardboard box to pack the bike (local bike shops being the obvious source),  but then can it be checked as luggage on the plane or shipped via UPS or greyhound? 

We have a lot of experience to offer on these topics. Try going back to the General Discussion page that lists topics. Type airline into the search box to get about 75 posts, many of which are relevant. Then try box for a lot more on that.

Fred

indyfabz

  • Guest
Re: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2011, 09:53:20 am »
In case this isn't addressed in older posts, if there are airline options check with each before you book.  Southwest and Frontier have relatively low bike charges.  I think they are both $50.  Delta, on the other hand, was charging something like $200 the last I checked. United/Continental, which we flew to MT last month, charges $100.

We just shipped UPS from Philadelphia to Missoula, MT and back.  Two bikes and a box with a B.O.B. trailer, stove, fuel bottle and racks inside was about $200 ground each way with $1,200 insurance on each bike and about $600 in insurance for the trailer and racks. Any local Seattle bike shop should be able to pack (for a fee) and ship the bike for your son. Note that if you fly with a stove and/or fuel bottle you risk having them confiscated. I would consider shipping any such items home (without fuel, of course).

As an aside, if your son has the time and you are eventually going to Boston, he can take Amtrak. Empire Builder from Seattle to Chicago and then the Lakeshore Limited to Boston.  The Seattle-Chicago route is especially nice. Transporting a bike via Amtrak is easy and inexpensive. It has been addressed several times in this forum.

Offline NCMJ

Re: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2011, 11:16:37 am »
Thanks!  Now I have lots of reading to do.    ;D

Offline staehpj1

Re: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2011, 11:22:11 am »
For the return trip I find it easiest to just stop at a bike shop and have them pack and ship it home for me.  I paid about $100 including shipping last time (Reno to Baltimore).  Packing a bike and getting it on a plane in a strange city is a hassle I prefer to avoid.

I usually fly with my bike on the way to my tour since I like to ride out of the airport and don't mind packing the bike at home.  Definitely use Southwest or Frontier, if you fly with a bike and they service the cities you need.  Most airlines are decidedly less bike friendly.

Offline Shane

Re: If you fly, how do you transport your bike?
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2011, 07:04:52 am »
Thanks!  Now I have lots of reading to do.    ;D

Here's some easy reading, press mute if you dont like Jimmy:)

VIDEO

Enjoy!