In the past, flying with a bicycle meant hidden fees and overage charges that often stacked up quickly and without much warning. Thankfully, some of the larger airlines, including American and Delta, have dropped the usual $150-$200 fee that came with flying with your bike. United Airlines is the latest to wave the extra fees, treating properly packed bicycles as standard luggage with no oversized bag charges.
The one caveat? Make sure it’s packed properly. United requires the bike to be packed inside a “sealed box using plastic foam or similar protective material inside. The box should be a hard-sided case or constructed from durable cardboard.” The handlebars must be sideways, pedals removed, and no e-bikes are allowed. United also states that they are “not liable for damage to any checked bicycles that are not packed as described above.”
Although you’ll still get charged for a box over 23 kilograms (50 pounds), as with any standard luggage, or if you’re over your allocated number of checked bags, this is great news for anyone dreaming of a bikepacking trip somewhere far away. Find all the details over at United.com.
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