The perils of travelling with bicycles are well known to those who have tried. They’re large and bulking items that are difficult to get to and from the airport and often difficult to get on and off the plane without paying a fortune.
Virgin has for a long time been the friend of the bicycle. When I flew with them several years back they not only transported my bike for free they also provided the box and tape for me to pack it. All I had to do was wheel the bike into the airport with a couple of wrenches. I’m not sure what their policy is these days (and they’ve stopped advertising in cycling magazines so it would seem those heady days of free bicycle transport are over) so I wouldn’t recommend that approach any more. Whichever airline you’re travelling with it’s best to have the bike properly packed and prepared before you get to the airport.
Virgin and Jetstar airlines have very similar requirements for flying with bikes. Here are Virgin’s as a guide:
Generally, the following applies to disassemble a bike:
- Turn handle bars sideways, and secure to frame. It may be necessary to remove the front wheel
- Remove pedals
- Lower or remove seat post
- Remove any accessories
- Deflate bicycle tyres
Virgin to state that “bike boxes may be purchased at the airport check-in counter” so you can still rock up with your bike and pack it at the airport if you wish. If your journey is a one-off then perhaps this is still a good option for some (if you’re confident enough to pack under time pressure) but for most I recommend getting a decent bike bag, either soft or hard, from a good manufacturer. Bigfoot bags are Australian made and start from around $650. Padded bike bags can be bought online from as little as $50. Try Velogear and Torpedo7 as two examples. Which you use will depend largely on how much your bicycle is worth and how often you travel.
So you’ve probably got transport to your home airport worked out, the airlines are sussed, but now you have to worry about getting the bike from the Gold Coast Airport to your accommodation on the Gold Coast. Bike bags will not fit in the majority of taxis and aren’t welcome on many buses (depending of course on which bike bag you’ve used—the cardboard boxes provided by Virgin are huge and awkward to handle) and so of course we’re recommending Black Label Transfers as your number one choice. We’ll care for your cargo like it was our own and we’ll bring a trailer to make sure everything fits nicely. We understand what it’s like to trust our precious cargo to other people (who may not appreciate its value as much as you do—so many people can’t conceive of spending more then $300 on a bicycle or the importance of riding on wheels that are still round and true). Black Label Transfers will make sure your bicycle completes its journey in good shape.
If you’re booking Black Label Transfers and require us to transport your bicycles then we recommended you mention that in the quote form or verbally if booking over the phone. Our prices are fair and true but we may bump you up to the 4-6 passenger fair price even if there are only 1-3 of you, only because it will necessitate a trailer (depending on how many people and bicycles are being transported).
As usual with our service we will meet you from the plane at the Gold Coast or Brisbane airports, help you to the vehicle (located very close to the airport terminal) and transport you in comfort and safety to the door of your accommodation.
For more information about travelling with bulky items consult the airline’s websites: