Your bike will be your soul mate on your trip, so you have to make sure that it travels safely and arrives in perfect conditions.

Here, you can find the three steps for shipping your bike as well as it’s different options.

The shipping container – whether it’s a cardboard box, soft shell, or hard shell case – is the first line of defense for your bike, so you should consider your vessel carefully. 

Cardboard is the cheapest avenue to take, and these boxes are usually available at local bike shops or through sites like BikeFlights.com. Just make sure to select only new or lightly-used boxes, as they break down and become less protective with time. For budget-friendly cyclists or those who don’t travel with their bikes often, a (well packed) cardboard box is all you need. 

For those who travel more often, you might want to invest in a soft shell case (such as EVOC’s Bike Travel Bag), which contains built-in foam padding and a fairly protective exterior, but isn’t as heavy as a hard shell. Those seeking maximum protection should opt for a hard shell case (like Thule’s Round Trip Sport Bike Travel Case), which comes with built-in padding and is shielded with tough, durable armor. 

If you’re flying with your bike, you might want to go with a hard shell case or cardboard box, as airlines usually prefer these carriers.

Once you have your case, it’s time for the most important part: packing your bike. Because no matter how protective your carrier is, if you carelessly load your bike in without wrapping it properly, it could be disastrous. 

Packing a bike requires disassembling it, which involves removing a lot of fragile pieces, including your derailleur, pedals, and seatpost. If this is your first time, contact us and we will be pleased to assist you.

After placing all of the pieces in your case, and wrapping any fragile pieces in a protective covering (like foam tubing), give the container a good shake to see if everything’s secure. If you hear a rattling sound, check your work and adjust as needed. 

If you’re nervous about packing your bike yourself – or just want to save time – you can take it to your local bike shop and have a mechanic pack it for you.

If you’re not driving by car to the trip start with your bike, you can choose to have it flown over or ground-ship it. Make sure to check your airline for any additional costs. Most airlines charge upwards of €100 to check in a bike.

You also can use a bike shipping service or you can take your bike directly to carriers like FedEx or UPS, who each offer different prices for transporting bikes. Of the two, FedEx is usually the most budget-friendly choice and it offers sweet doorstep pickup and delivery options.

Whichever shipping option you pick, consider paying a little extra to protect your bike. While most services won’t cover any damages that occur because of improper packing.

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