Friday, 15 July 2011

Airlines and bikes

This weekend I really need to get on and book my flight to Buenos Aires as it is only 2 and a bit months to go now till I start the Vuelta Sudamericana ride.  The part I am not looking forward to though is trying to work out how much the airlines will charge for taking a bicycle onboard, as I need to factor this into my price comparisons.  Pick the wrong airline and you can end up paying 200CHF or thereabouts, and pick the right one and you can even take it for free.

The problem seems to be that it is not always that clear what the airlines will charge exactly.  And some people have travelled with the same airlines from the same starting point to the same destination and been charged different amounts, depending on the person that checked them in, and how that person interpreted the airline's policy.

What is clear though is that I will have to leave my bike in Peru at the end of the tour.  The reason being that Anny and I are travelling around Peru for one month, and going all over the place by buses and planes and I can't really take my bike easily on each leg of the journey.  Probably what I will do is to choose a basic but reliable bike and try to pay around 500EUR, but no more.  Then when I leave the Vuelta Sudamerica in Cusco I can give the bike to one of Anny's cousins or if they don't want it maybe some lucky stranger.  This will make the logistics of travelling around Peru much easier.

I do actually have a bike in Zurich that I bought for 500EUR in the Netherlands, that is left outside one of the apartments in Zurich where I used to live.  However, it has been there for a year now, and only covered partly by the shelter, so it could be that either it has been stolen or it has rusted to hell.  If I am really lucky though it will still be there and it will be in good shape, in which case I can use that one.  I mean clearly I wont miss it that much if I haven't gone to collect it in the last year, and wont mind leaving it behind in Peru.  The only issue will be is it light enough for doing lots of hills, as there will certainly be a lot of hills on the ride.


  1. Buy a full suspension Giant when you are there:

  2. Full suspension would not be ideal as more things to break, and lots of paved roads too, where the suspension would not be necessary. Best would be either no suspension or front suspension only. I was considering to buy a bike in Buenos Aires but that would mean going out there early to make sure I have enough time to get one before the tour starts, which also means few nights extra hotel, leaving Anny even earlier, having to get used to a new bike during the tour itself. It would be much better if I am already used to the bike and I have the reassurance of knowing that I already have one that I like.