bikes on planes

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by splunk, Nov 2, 2005.

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  1. splunk

    splunk Newbie

    Hi All,

    Have a few months in another state and was wondering what Qantas charge for bring a bike on the plane. Furthermore, do I need to buy a bike bag for it? They are pretty expensive and if I can get away is just bubble wrap and a box, then I will as I am not a pro bike rider.

    Will Qantas be insured if any damages (it is a $3000+ bike)?

    Furthermore, does anyone have any experiences they want to share.



  2. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005

    There is no charge unless you end up overlimit and subject to excess charges

    It doesn't need a bag, just go to a bike shop and get a bike box from them, won't cost you a penny for one of those

    What you need to do is

    Remove pedals
    Remove front wheel
    Remove handlebar from its cradle and cable tie it to the cross bar

    Put into box and seal with parcel tape

    Go to check in desk and check it in

    They will not be liable for damage to the bike since it will be classified as being fragile and so exempt from liability

    I did this last weekend to Brisbane and back

    To remove the handlebars, you need an alun key and for the pedals a 15mm spanner

  3. markis10

    markis10 Veteran Member

    Nov 25, 2004
    BNE & SYD
    The offical word from Qantas on thier website:

    Sporting Equiment
    Travel insurance is recommended.

    You can advise us in advance if you need to carry the following sport equipment as checked baggage. Additional baggage charges may apply.

    Note: Due to size restrictions some equipment may not travel on the same aircraft as the customer.

    To be accepted for carriage, bicycles must be suitably packed in a bike box. Bike boxes can be purchased from most Qantas Terminals at a cost of A$16.50 or NZ$30 (including GST) or the local currency equivalent to A$15.

    Bike pack dimensions are:

    Length: 140cm (55in)
    Width: 30cm (12in)
    Height: 80cm (32in)
    Before bicycles can be accepted they must be packed with:

    Tyres deflated
    Pedals removed
    Handle bars fixed parallel to the frame
    If the bicycles length exceeds 180cm (71in), the front wheel should be removed and fixed beside the rear wheel, inside the bike box
    Australian domestic - The bike box constitutes one piece of checked baggage. If the bike box and your checked baggage exceed the free baggage allowance, additional baggage rates will apply.

    New Zealand domestic - A flat rate handling fee of NZ$20 per bike. Flat rate covers bikes up to 15kg (33lb). Bikes over 15kg (33lb) will be charged NZ$20 plus NZ$5 per kilo over 15kg (33lb). If a bike box is required a fee of NZ$30 will be charged inclusive of box and handling fee.

    International piece system - The bike box constitutes one piece of checked baggage. If the bike box and your checked baggage exceed the free baggage allowance, additional baggage rates will apply.

    International weight system - The bike box constitutes one piece of checked baggage. When the combined weight of the bicycle and your checked baggage exceeds the free baggage weight allowance, additional baggage rates will apply.
  4. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
    Unless planning to cycle to the airport, then don't bother with getting a QF box, that's just paying $16.50/$30 for something that can be obatined easily for free

    As far as deflating tyres, don't fully deflate them otherwise you have a greater risk of damage occurring; just deflate them to about 50% in order to avoid the risk of tyres bursting in flight

  5. newflyer

    newflyer Intern

    Sep 19, 2005
    The 'Berra (ACT)
    Flight Map:
    View my flight map
    Hi Splunk - hopefully you haven't left yet and this advice still helpful!

    I have taken my bike with me from Canberra to most capital cities and to USA on Qantas. I've never had a problem or additional charges (even travelling on Xmas Eve!), and staff always helpful, especially if they can see you've packed it properly.

    If you pack your bike properly you should have no worries about damage, no matter how hard the "handlers" throw it around! In addition to points above, I'd offer the following:
    - Get the best box you can from local bike shop (avoid the ones that are torn or damaged); if possible, see if they'll give you a plastic spacer for your forks (this protects them in transport when the wheel is removed);
    - reinforce all flaps and box edges with packaging tape;
    - wrap frame in bubble-wrap or cardboard (I use chunks of polystyrene to protect brakes and derailleurs);
    - tape pedals to frame (prevents you from forgetting to pack them);
    - tape crankarms to frame (prevents them from moving around);
    - Print out some big lables with your name, destination and FF number, and stick them somewhere obvious; and, most importanly;
    - DON'T leave packing your bike to the last moment. It takes ages to do it me on this!

    In short, you want to make sure that your bike can't move around in the box that can move around, and you want to prevent as many protruding objects (ie, quick release skewers, etc.) as possible to stop the box being torn during transit.

    PM me if you want/need more info.

  6. og

    og Junior Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    I have taken a road bike SYD-CHC-SYD with no problems. I undid the handle bars and used plastic cable ties to hold them to the frame. Skewer out of front wheel and wrapped it in a plastic bag taped to the wheel. More cable ties to hold wheel to frame and again to hold saddle plus seat post to frame. I used old bits of cardboard taped in the box to provide crush support so the bike didn't get busted if some camel suit wearing smartie decided to jump on the box. I used a plastic spacer in the front forks to provide support and to reduce the chance of them punching through the box. Then I used lots of plastic tape around the edges of the box to add strength.

    Only problem with cable ties is cutting them again. Either pack scissors in the box or use re-usable ones (recommended).

    Check-in staff had no probs with the boxes and they turned up very quickly at each end in excellent condition.

    Some books recommend using panniers in the boxes to provide additional strength & padding.

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