Going to a scenic place? Of course, you’d want to take your bike along! You can’t always travel to a location on your bike, and sometimes you might want to explore places in a continent far from yours.Traveling with a bike isn’t as difficult as you might think.To help you out, we’ll walk you through all the process of booking and traveling.
If the thought of traveling with your bike is making you panic, don’t. Traveling with a bike isn’t as difficult as you might think. To help you out, we’ll walk you through the entire process of booking, packing, and traveling with one so that you can reach your destination and get into cycling immediately.
Traveling With a Bike
Sure, it’s stressful, but not for the reasons you might be thinking! You can figure out the logistics easily, and we’ll show you how. The only two parts you need to focus on are dragging your bike to the airport or train station and handing over your precious bike to the luggage and customs staff.
Booking Your Bike on a Train or Plane
It’s perfectly alright to show up at the airport without booking your bike onboard beforehand, but it takes off a lot of burden if you’re able to do it. What’s more, you can book days before and probably get a cheaper rate than otherwise.
Call up the company you are traveling with, and they can walk you through the entire process. Some airlines require approval from their customer service department 48 hours before a flight and do not consider it a part of the luggage. This air infographic shows the air travel luggage charges specifically for bikes.
You’ve flown with your bike, but do you have any transportation to make sure you reach the hotel? Ensure that you check luggage restrictions on the public transport of your destination and the rules and regulations of your hotel as well.
How To Pack a Bike for Travel
Traveling with your bike isn’t as difficult as some make it out to be. You just need to plan ahead and make some decisions, and it’s smooth sailing from there. Now comes the tricky part—preparing your bike for travel and packing it. Some questions you should consider are:
- Is there a weight limit, and how much does my bike weigh?
- Do I have a bike bag? Should I invest in one?
- If I pack my bag in the box, can I ensure its safety?
Answering these questions will decide which of the following options you choose.
A bike box is a challenging task to pack in. Unlike bike bags, a bike box is more challenging to carry around because they don’t come with wheels. Even so, they are a perfectly valid option because they are cheaper and solve the weight issue.
How To Pack a Bike in a Box
Start by disassembling everything and packing them snugly in a protected box using bubble wrap. Make sure the frame, handlebars, forks, and derailleur are protected. Also, you will want to zip-tie and fasten any loose parts.
Here’s a pro-tip for you. If you have a big enough box to fit your bike with the back wheel attached, only remove the front wheel and place it to one side of the frame. Then, use protective material in between and zip-tie to secure them. Lastly, use tape to reinforce your bike to the box, and, voila, you’re done!
Compared to packing in a box, a bike bag is an easier choice. It’s quick, protective, and you can do the packing in a snap. There are two downsides you’ll want to keep in mind, though.
Firstly, not everyone has a bike bag, and it can be relatively costly to purchase one. Perhaps you can consider it as a long-term investment, or rent one. Secondly, a bike bag can be rather heavy. Therefore, it would be best to reconfirm that weight limit before you purchase one.
How To Pack a Bike in a Bike Bag
Simply disassemble the pedals, wheels, derailleur, and handlebars and put them in the designated spaces in your bike bag. Next, secure everything using the straps. You can use double protection by putting cardboard pieces between your brake pads and using a double layer for other sensitive parts.
What You Can Do Instead
If you’ve invested in an expensive bike, it makes sense why you would want it to accompany you in your travels. The thing is that it’s not something you can just put in your bag and bring anywhere. So, instead of packing it, you can consider renting a bike at your target destination instead, which could be more economical.
You can also consider contracting any services or companies that offer to transport your bike. There are quite a few options, and for a minimal fee, you can have your bike transported without any hassle of booking or packing it yourself.
We’ve covered all the roadblocks you might run into while choosing to pack and transport your bike, so now you can relax and plan that trip you were avoiding.