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Thread: Transporting bikes with BA

  1. #1
    3rd Cat
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    Default Transporting bikes with BA

    Hi,

    Does anyone have any experience of transporting bikes with British Airways? I'm planning on buying a hard bike case, but even many of the bags do not seem to fit in the dimensions specified by BA (240cm x 75cm x 65cm) with the 75cm dimension being the usual problem area. Anyone know how rigidly they are enforced?

    Thanks,

    Barney, Cambridge CC

  2. #2

    Default

    I've transported bikes both short and long-haul with BA, always in a bike bag. My experience is that they don't bother at all about dimensions, but they do have a weight limit of 32kg (I think) for any single item and they do seem to be concerned about this. Your bag/box will usually be checked for weight at the over-sized bag drop (they don't take your bike off you at check-in or the usual fast bag drop), but not always. Unless you have stuffed your box/bag with loads of tools, pumps, spares etc, or have a particularly heavy box, you should get comfortably under the 32kgs.
    I have not had any damage to my bike during transit but I do put in extra foam padding and I take a few spare spokes just in case. I also put spacers between my forks.
    Overall, I would say BA have been pretty good with my bikes.
    And btw, if you are going to Australia, don't forget to clean your tyres. They are super hot on anyone inadvertantly bringing in alien pests and diseases.
    N

  3. #3
    4th Cat Vorpal's Avatar
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    Default transporting bikes with BA

    BA allow the substitution of one piece of baggage with a bicycle, provided it's in a bike bag or case. The worst that is likely to happen is that you have to take it to (and claim it from) the oversize baggage area. You can probably find the policy that covers transportation of bicycles by searching their web site.

    My experience is that bicycles are less likely to make plane changes than regular baggage. BA have been good about delivering them to me, when the bike didn't make the plane change.

    edited to correct misspelling
    Last edited by Vorpal; 31-03-2009 at 10:20 AM.

  4. #4
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    Flew back from Malaga last year (with Easyjet admittedly) and the ground crew (who are the same for all regardless of the carrier) managed to run over the bike case (with bike inside) with the luggage train (very heavy with solid wheels), net result destroyed bike (well the seat post clamp survived).

    My advise is either:-

    1. Hire a bike at your destination
    2. Purchase the best bike case you can afford
    3. Make sure the bike is insured, Airlines have a worldwide liability of 1000 swiss frances - Period (about £800), your travel insurance will not be sufficient due to the single item limit. I was covered by my M&S household Contents Policy (good away from home add-on)

    Good luck

    Rich

  5. #5
    Administrator ChrisB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vorpal View Post
    BA allow the substition of one piece of baggage with a bicycle.
    Nope, you get one piece of sporting equipment IN ADDITION to your luggage allowance, at no extra cost. The 32kg limit IS adhered to - you may get charged additional fees if it's over 23kg - my shiney card exempts me from this, so I'm not sure on this. Plenty of info on BA.com.
    Last edited by ChrisB; 31-03-2009 at 12:45 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Thanks!

    Thank you all for the quick replies, I'm glad to have found some people with experience in this area. I was considering buying this case:

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/dh...ox/5360026102/

    Which will fit in the dimensions required by BA, but once it has got my bike in will be over the 23Kg limit (13.5Kg case + 10.5Kg bike = 24Kg) so I may have to pay extra for that. This one:

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/dh...se/5360041096/

    Would be within the weight limit but, at 87cm high, will be over the 75cm dimension restriction.

    I was just wondering which would be most troublesome for me as I would rather pay the extra charge than have them say I can't take the bike because it won't fit through the scanner or something, but at £25 each way I would obviously also rather avoid the charge if possible. Ryanair and Easyjet make no mention of dimensions, as they use the same airports I just wondered if anyone had taken a case outside the dimensions through with BA and could save me an hour talking to computers on their helpline.

    Thanks again,

    Barney

  7. #7
    4th Cat Vorpal's Avatar
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    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisB View Post
    Nope, you get one piece of sporting equipment IN ADDITION to your luggage allowance, at no extra cost. The 32kg limit IS adhered to - you may get charged additional fees if it's over 23kg - my shiney card exempts me from this, so I'm not sure on this. Plenty of info on BA.com.
    I stand corrected.

    http://www.britishairways.com/travel...=searchResults

    I have operated for years under the belief that I only got to check two pieces of luggage, including my bike.
    Last edited by ChrisB; 31-03-2009 at 12:45 PM.

  8. #8
    Administrator ChrisB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vorpal View Post
    I stand corrected.

    http://www.britishairways.com/travel...=searchResults

    I have operated for years under the belief that I only got to check two pieces of luggage, including my bike.
    Well, it depends which class and route you're flying - most routes you're only allowed one bag in economy, but some (to the US for example) you're allowed two - plus your sports kit. Higher classes get a larger allowance.

    Barney - I'm not going to have time to get my box down and measure it today, as we're packing for a trip ourselves, sorry

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisB View Post
    Barney - I'm not going to have time to get my box down and measure it today, as we're packing for a trip ourselves, sorry
    No problem at all Chris, have a good trip...

    Barney

  10. #10
    Baldwinchris
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    I've travelled on BA 6 times in the past two years (4 to US and 2 to France) with the Scicon Aerotech Evolution Bike Box and have never had the size or weight questioned. I've been known to pack all my cycling kit in with the bike and haven't weighed it. Maybe I just got lucky. I just saw prices for them and it's about £200 more expensive than when I bought it orignally, not sure why.

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