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Airports - checking in panniers.

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by tredder, 25 Mar 2008.

  1. tredder

    tredder New Member

    Location:
    East Anglia
    After having checked in the bike, I am left with at least four panniers to also get checked in.

    One can be carried on as hand luggage, what to do with the remainder? How do the seasoned travellers get these checked in?

    Assuming I won't be able to check the three in individually and that any big bag to put them all into will have to stay with me for the duration of the trip....

    Has anyone any suggestions?
     
  2. Mister Paul

    Mister Paul Honky

    Location:
    North Somerset
    russian dolls.
     
  3. Brains

    Brains Veteran

    Location:
    Greenwich
    Down to the local pound shop, and buy what we used to call in HK a 'Filipino handbag' - one of those cheap stipey bags, dump it one the way out
     
  4. mark

    mark Senior Member

    Location:
    Frisco, CO, USA
    On one tour I bought a cardboard shipping box that was exactly the maximum size for checked luggage, and used it to hold the contents of three panniers. The fourth pannier was my carry-on bag. When I got off the plane I loaded up the bike, tossed the cardboard box and cycled out of the airport. For the return trip I cycled to the airport, bought a duffel bag in one of the shops and used it for three panniers worth of gear.

    For my tour next month I'm staying at the same hostel the night I arrive and the night before I leave, so I've asked them if I could store a duffel bag there while I'm on tour.

    I carried a duffel bag with me on my last tour, it wasn't that bad but I'd be just as happy to leave it someplace since I'm not using it on tour.
     
  5. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Location:
    Brighton
    Russian dolls and I got 2 wrapped together in that clingfilm stuff to make one bag.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    tredder

    tredder New Member

    Location:
    East Anglia
    mmmm, lots of ideas! Muchos grassy arse.....
     
  7. We tried Philipino Handbags but found them not quite up to the job. Instead, we got a couple of large cheapo holdalls and removed the cardboard bit. They've lasted several trips now and wrap up small enough to stow away while we are pedalling.
     
  8. Amanda P

    Amanda P The CycleChat user formerly known as Uncle Phil

    I tend to use four panniers and a handlebar bag.

    'Bar bag goes as hand luggage, and I make sure there are no nasty tools in it.

    ("Go on then, come at me with that patch.")

    Each pair of panniers is strapped together - parcel tape around the handles and more tape wrapped around the bags themselves. Wrap it tight and it keeps the bags together. So thats two items of hold luggage.

    No problems with that approach, and no extra bags to carry around with me on tour.
     
  9. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    I was just going to tie all 4 of them together (take off the clips in case they break) and wrap them in a large square of that blue tarp from B&Q which is also my tent footprint which i carry anyway...dunno if thats a good idea or not though. The only problem would be having to do all this on the floor at the airport in the check in queue at 4am in the mrning after a long dark ride to the airport.
     
  10. Amanda P

    Amanda P The CycleChat user formerly known as Uncle Phil

    Hmmm. The tarp may come back with holes in, and it's kinda tricky to wrap bulgy panniers securely in a flat sheet. You'd have to use tape as well.

    If you're going to travel by air with a bike, you'd better get used to grubbing about on the floor at the check-in desk. There's always something you have to do - you just have to hope it doesn't involve re-packing your underwear.

    Especially on the return flight.
     
  11. jay clock

    jay clock Massive member

    Location:
    Hampshire UK
    The key issue for many pannier-users is the baggage fees now imposed by most airlines. To keep this down I bought a 99p holdall from a poundshop, then simply put the 2 panniers with the contents inside. The holdall survived but I would not use it too many times. It weighs next to nothing

    I then had a large plastic carrier bag into which I put my handlebar bag and odds and ends, to circumvent the "one hand baggage" rule.
     
  12. OP
    OP
    tredder

    tredder New Member

    Location:
    East Anglia
    I like the cling-film idea, it may not protect from knocks & scrapes, but it is surprisingly strong and easy to carry half a roll for the return journey...

    Just stack your three panniers close & wrap away! Carry the fourth on as hand-luggage...
     
  13. wafflycat

    wafflycat New Member

    Location:
    middle of Norfolk
    Don't want to be using Heathrow T5 for your bike... you may get on the flight but your bike & luggage may not! :cry::wacko:
     
  14. mark

    mark Senior Member

    Location:
    Frisco, CO, USA
    Please don't remind me about T5! I'm scheduled to return to the US through that terminal when I finish my tour, and I am not happy with what I'm reading on the BA website! Presumably they'll have straightened things out by the time I travel (late April-mid May), but right now it's a little disturbing to hear the stories.
     
  15. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Location:
    Brighton
    Don't worry Mark, they'll definitely have the glitches ironed out by April/May 2009;)