What are the costs of shipping a Bike?

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Sometimes there will come a time when you need to ship your bike, perhaps you have sold it online and it needs to be shipped across the globe, or if you are going on a holiday and you would like to bring the bike along to your holiday home.

You need to know how much it will cost to ship, you need to know where and how much you are willing to spend on shipping because as always the more you spend the quicker that it will travel.

So that’s why I have researched and written guide, to help you out. 

So lets get started.

Do you need to hang your bikes on your garage wall for more space? IF so check out our guide here


How much is it to ship your Bike?

So obviously the cost of the shipping will depend on how far in needs to travel and what shipping company you would like to go with. each company has different prices and regulations, and there may be one that you prefer to go with.

You have the options are to ship it with a bike box, and anything else could just be bubbled wrapped with easy. Most companies do require to pack the bike securely yourself so bear that in mind.

A bike box will come in all sizes, and they are pretty cheap to buy online.

But be sure to not get on that is to low on quality because protecting your bike is so important, its better to spend more on a bike case to send it in which would protect any damage.

Shipping costs:

Insurance will always cost more on top.

  • UPS-With this service you will pay somewhere around $90to $120. 
  • FedEx– $60 to $140 depending upon where you’re shipping your bike. 
  • Bike Shipping Services-This is a great service and they pick up and delivers your bike to your destination. No packing up your bike. This service isn’t cheap, but it’s convenient. The cost depends upon how soon you want your bike. For instance, a bike shipped from Washington DC to Dallas, Texas costs $174, for a one-week delivery.

So whatever you end up going with, remember the prices i listed could be very different for you depending on the weight and size of your bike. The value of your bike is another important factor, because you may want insurance.

Some tips with packing your Bikes.

Every company that you ship with will have similar directions on how you need to pack your bike. We have broken it down into a step by step guide for you.


Our Step By Step Guide:

  • First Step you will need to remove the handlebars, then the next step is to wrap them in foam to prevent scratching. They sell cushion wrap foam online. It will keep the parts of your bike from getting scratched up.
  • Next up you can remove the saddle and front wheel.  And Wrap them up in bubble wrap.
  • Remove the pedals, and again a theme which is a bubble wrap them up.
  • Make sure you remove the front brake or you can loosen the brake cable.
  • Place a fork spacer between the front forks to keep them from getting bent during shipping 
  • So now, Remove the front wheel. Put a large piece of foam wrap on the right side of your bike’s frame. Put the removed wheel against the foam wrap. Tie the wheel with bungee cords to the foam wrapped bike frame.
  • Its important that you now Let the air out of your back wheel. 
  • Next up you need to take out the rear derailleur and wrap it with foam. Tape or tie it to the back wheel. Wrap all this with foam. 
  • Wrap any exposed area of your bike’s frame with wrapping foam, As we seem to say alot its important! You can’t wrap it enough.
  • Put your bike carefully into you box. 
  • Make sure its tightly packed, that there is no sound when moving the box, of the bike moving around, or any other things moving around.
  • Print your label and you are nearly done
  • Next and lastly just take your bike over to the shipping, or if you have arranged for it to be picked up, book a time.

So what will happen when my bike does arrive in the destination 

A common theme is that bikers have their bikes shipped to a local bike shop rather than to a hotel, this can be a great option as the bike store will have a place to store your bike and will be used to handling bikes. Rather than the hotel who may not wish to store your bike before you arrive. 

A bike shop could be a really safe option compared to a hotel storage area.

The other huge bonus is that the bike store could set your bike up, for a small fee, or perhaps for free, as it would not be to difficult for them, if they know what they are doing.

So this will mean, that when you get started on your holiday you can hop straight on it. Saving you hassle and time!

If you choose to send it to your hotel, make sure you ring them before hand, that they will need to store it. Plus for them to have a pace where you can assemble it.

That being said make sure you send your bike tools, you dont want to get there and not be able to assemble your bike.

Shipping a bike from a bike store is an option.

Depending on where you are living, there is a chance that there is a bike store that will ship bikes. 

A big local store will have the resources to do it all for you, and could be a sensible option for you.

They could take your bike apart for you, and have them ship it for you.

And if they link up with another bike store in the destination area, meaning its all automated for you! 

Bear in mind it could be a little more costly.

Taking your Bike on a Plane

So many of you may like the idea of taking your bike with you on a plane. 

Most airlines give you the chance to do just that.

So lets get started on a quick guide to getting you bike on a plane.

Look at the airlines terms and conditions for the regulations on taking a bike.

This is because each airline will have its own rules on the size and maximum weights of your bike, rules on packing it, and packing methods that they will accept.

Once you have done that then they will put your bike in the cargo area, make sure you pack it well and like i said before don’t let anything rattle around in the box and that will cause damage.

Below area few rules that i researched on a few airlines. Be sure to check the websites yourselves to keep up to date on any changes, but as of 2021 these are accurate.

American airlines:

  • United Airlines- The standard price is $150, taking your bike as a check in bag.
  • Alaskan-This is cheaper at $30, with taking it again to the check in.
  • American Airlines– The starting price is the same as united airlines at $150

International airlines:

  • British Airways – You can take it, but you need to ring and organise it in advance, you need to ring 72 hours before you fly and give them all the details on the size weight and what you are sending it in.

A few questions you may ask the airline, or they will ask you.

  1.  Is there any bike bags they won’t allow?
  2. Important – how much does it cost?
  3. Where is the bike going to be stored on the plane?
  4. Insurance?
  5. Will i need to call to book the bike in, like BA, British airways.
  6. The maximum weight?
  7. The maximum size?

Make sure you weigh your bike, as like with anything if its to heavy then you may be charged.

So below i will review a few options to actually put your bike in storage, a bike bag or a cardboard box the choice is yours

Cardboard boxes

Pros: They are cheap and readily available, they are quick sturdy and everything is sent in cardboard boxes so it works!

Cons: Bikes may get damaged with a cardboard box package.

Soft Bike Bag

Pros: Its better protected than a cardboard option.

Cons: Make sure you say that it has a bike inside you it may be mistaken for normal luggage and thrown around, and may send it down the conveyor belt.

They are also a bit more pricey.

Hard Bike Case

Pros: Really tough, and very safe for your bike, the safest out of all the options here.

they come with strong locks and its really safe compared to the other options.

Cons- They are huge and chunky, so if you are back packing it may not be the best option. As they take up space and harder to move around.

And they are heavier so you may pay more for shipping.

Final Thoughts.

Bringing your favourite bike with you on your trip can be a really nice addition. If its your bike, you may much prefer to go riding on it rather than renting one, which could be pricey and you will have to pay a deposit and pay fo any damage, even if it was not your fault.

So i hope you enjoyed this guide and overall you really need to think about what type of shipping suits you. There are many variables which would change what is the best option.

If you are shipping domestically?

How far?

How long is the holiday?

Whatever you end up doing, be sure to have fun.

Happy riding!