The Chainlink

I'm going to be flying out to LA for a couple of weeks. I don't think that I can last without my bike for that long... does anyone have any experience taking a bike on a plane?

What did you pack your bike in?
Did you have to pay extra?
Which airline did you fly on?
What else?

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I have a hard plastic bike box that I would be glad to let you borrow for the unexorbitant fee of $25. It has tons of space. I used it for years with my circus bike and it always arrived safely. I recently bought a new one- therefore the reason I am willing to let you borrow the old one... Let me know. Matt (407) 808-1080
if Ryan doesn't borrow it can i haha im taking a trip out to portland in a week and was going to fly it out with me via south west with it being $ 50 each way.

Matt Roben said:
I have a hard plastic bike box that I would be glad to let you borrow for the unexorbitant fee of $25. It has tons of space. I used it for years with my circus bike and it always arrived safely. I recently bought a new one- therefore the reason I am willing to let you borrow the old one... Let me know. Matt (407) 808-1080
I feel like finding this thread is serendipitous. I'm going to be in Holland in a couple of weeks and cannot get the thought out of my head of buying a sweet Dutch bike as a super-cool souvenir. I'm flying Iberia Airlines and they charge 75 Euros, which is close to $100.

If I could find a Dutch bike shop willing to pack it for me, Fed Ex is probably the cheaper option.

Uh oh. This now makes it easier for me to possibly actually do this. Wow. How cool would that be???!!
wish i could fed ex mine sadly i do now know where I'm staying when i do arrive in Portland so south west is the only way to go :( . a souvenir bike sounds like a great idea.

Shay said:
I feel like finding this thread is serendipitous. I'm going to be in Holland in a couple of weeks and cannot get the thought out of my head of buying a sweet Dutch bike as a super-cool souvenir. I'm flying Iberia Airlines and they charge 75 Euros, which is close to $100.

If I could find a Dutch bike shop willing to pack it for me, Fed Ex is probably the cheaper option.

Uh oh. This now makes it easier for me to possibly actually do this. Wow. How cool would that be???!!
@Shay: for going transatlantic, it will usually be cheaper to carry the bike with than to ship overseas, even for things that don't require a customs declaration. (it's always much less hassle to bring something with you over the border than to send it in a box.) a "quick quote" at FedEx.com shows that a 50 lb. package (Dutch bikes are heavy!) from Amsterdam to Chicago will be at least $250 -- way more than IB's $100 charge. sadly, whereas most airlines carried checked bikes for free on overseas flights a few years ago, that's no longer the case.

@Amanda: for shipping bikes within the USA, I've really liked Amtrak shipping. rates are typically cheaper than FedEx ground, it goes directly on Amtrak trains (<2 days to PDX), they have roomy bike boxes available at the station, and they'll hold packages at the station. the one drawback is that not all stations have baggage/shipping services.
Where are you going in the Netherlands? Will you have access to a car?

Shay said:
I feel like finding this thread is serendipitous. I'm going to be in Holland in a couple of weeks and cannot get the thought out of my head of buying a sweet Dutch bike as a super-cool souvenir. I'm flying Iberia Airlines and they charge 75 Euros, which is close to $100.

If I could find a Dutch bike shop willing to pack it for me, Fed Ex is probably the cheaper option.

Uh oh. This now makes it easier for me to possibly actually do this. Wow. How cool would that be???!!
Most of the week I'll be staying with friends in small town called Zutphen. They do have a car.

Duppie said:
Where are you going in the Netherlands? Will you have access to a car?

Shay said:
I feel like finding this thread is serendipitous. I'm going to be in Holland in a couple of weeks and cannot get the thought out of my head of buying a sweet Dutch bike as a super-cool souvenir. I'm flying Iberia Airlines and they charge 75 Euros, which is close to $100.

If I could find a Dutch bike shop willing to pack it for me, Fed Ex is probably the cheaper option.

Uh oh. This now makes it easier for me to possibly actually do this. Wow. How cool would that be???!!
Thanks for the info. I had no clue it would be that expensive!

payton said:
@Shay: for going transatlantic, it will usually be cheaper to carry the bike with than to ship overseas, even for things that don't require a customs declaration. (it's always much less hassle to bring something with you over the border than to send it in a box.) a "quick quote" at FedEx.com shows that a 50 lb. package (Dutch bikes are heavy!) from Amsterdam to Chicago will be at least $250 -- way more than IB's $100 charge. sadly, whereas most airlines carried checked bikes for free on overseas flights a few years ago, that's no longer the case.

@Amanda: for shipping bikes within the USA, I've really liked Amtrak shipping. rates are typically cheaper than FedEx ground, it goes directly on Amtrak trains (<2 days to PDX), they have roomy bike boxes available at the station, and they'll hold packages at the station. the one drawback is that not all stations have baggage/shipping services.
I have a friend that came up with a great solution to putting a bike between his legs when he travels.

Not having time to hunt down a bike shop or co-op that carries cheap junkers he gets a cheap ass fixed gear from Bikes Direct sent to where he will be staying, makes sure he packs or will have access to the basic tools required to build it out of the box and sells the bike on Craigslist at a small loss. Usually he is able to get the sale set up before he is even in town.
Wow Dug - your friend's a genius.
My friends package their bikes up in a box like this:


They lie and say that it is camping equipment and ask for some fragile stickers. For some reason, they found that if you say it is a bike, they charge, however, it could be the same exact box, and if you say that it is camping equipment, they do not charge you. I forget which airlines though. Sorry.
So are you looking for an Oma style bike, or a brand name modern-day Dutch style?
If it is the latter you are looking for, I suggest you try to visit http://www.itek.be/nl/winkels.htm. The closest store is in Roermond, which 1.5-2 hours drive.

They sell last years brand name bikes at big discounts (including Batavus, Gazelle, and even Koga Miyata, the Cadillac among Dutch bike brands). Don't expect much service, and sales are limited to stock on hand, but they are darn cheap. We bought my wife's bike, a Gazelle trekking bike, there a few years ago. We got it home in Chicago for under a $1000. The bike was original $1300 (and a similar bike would cost a lot more in the US)

You can make day trip out of it and stop in Nijmegen.


While staying in Zutphen, make sure to visit Deventer. I lived there for a few years. It's a city at bikeable distance (10-15 miles) from Zutphen. Deventer is beautiful city with lots of old houses and cobblestone streets. It is one of the few cities in the Netherlands that in 60's started renovating entire historic neighborhoods (the only other one I am aware of is Maastricht in the south) , whereas a lot of cities just razed entire blocks.
If I remember correctly you can ride to Deventer on top of the dike along the IJssel and even pass some windmills

Dang, just writing this makes me jealous of your trip

Shay said:
Most of the week I'll be staying with friends in small town called Zutphen. They do have a car.
Duppie said:
Where are you going in the Netherlands? Will you have access to a car?

Shay said:
I feel like finding this thread is serendipitous. I'm going to be in Holland in a couple of weeks and cannot get the thought out of my head of buying a sweet Dutch bike as a super-cool souvenir. I'm flying Iberia Airlines and they charge 75 Euros, which is close to $100.

If I could find a Dutch bike shop willing to pack it for me, Fed Ex is probably the cheaper option.
Uh oh. This now makes it easier for me to possibly actually do this. Wow. How cool would that be???!!

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