Berlin / Leipzig / Prague / Warsaw

It looks like Mr SHK & I might end up doing this general 'tour'. Now I'm not a long distance cyclist by any stretch of the imagination; but what'll probably happen is the Bromptons will get loaded up with our luggage, we'll cycle to/from train stations and use them inner-city / suburb to explore a bit rather than using bus/tram/train etc [Sorry if this isn't strictly 'touring and expedition'!]

Now I've not done cycling on the continent before - last year we hadn't yet got the bikes so did a tour of Europe with luggage and train only.

Can anyone tell me if there are things I need to keep in mind in any of these places?

Like, for instance, whether a Brompton is going to be a 'bicycle' if it's folded up when it comes to luggage rules or not; will I need an extra ticket for it, will it need to be bagged... any tips on whether Bromptons are normally allowed indoors or not... and anything like rules requiring lights/reflectors/helmets etc (one guidebook said that cycles in ?germany? need spoke reflectors).

Thanks ;)
 

skudupnorth

Cycling Skoda lover
Cannot help on the cycling laws for Prague but after driving over there many times i have seen many,many cars on the road that would be crushed in this country so cyclists proberly don't have many issues except for the dodgy cars ! I went to Leipzig a couple of years ago with work and again i saw nothing different with cycling,just less helmet wearing and more proper off road cycle paths.Sounds like a brilliant trip
 

CycleTourer

Veteran
Location
Bury St. Edmunds
Helmets are recommended but not a legal requirement in Germany. If your Brompton was in a soft case then you might get away with it as hand luggage, otherwise I think it would count as a bike and you will need a ticket on trains. You could always check with the Deutsche Bahn

For information on the German cycling laws have a look at Tim and Maxa Burleigh's bicyclegermany.com site.
 

Crankarm

Legendary Member
Location
Nr Cambridge
When I took my Brompton on tour down to the Pyrenees I didn't volunteer I had a bike and was never asked for a ticket for it or required to purchase one. I did ask when I booked the ticket with Eurostar on the phone and was told it was not a problem as long as it would fit in the luggage racks, which on the Eurostar are huge. I guessed the TGV would be the same although they were a bit smaller. On both the Eurostar and the TGV the Brompton wasn't an issue. Didn't have a ticket for it either, only myself. Well I say it wasn't an issue on the TGV save for the first guard in Paris, going down to Biarritz, who was a bit shitty when he saw me with it fully loaded on the platform "Non a velo!" "C'est un velo pliant" he stormed off in a picque of Gallic shrug. I didn't see him again until he checked composted my ticket when I was sat in my seat on the train by which time he'd very slightly mellowed, but not by much. He had a quick look around the carriage for the bike but couldn't see it so buggered off. It was in the luggage rack behind my touring pannier and other panniers which he might have guessed or not, I didn't really care. Apart from that the Brompton was loved everywhere I went with it in France. It was a real attraction in most places. A good way to improve one's French. Mine's not bad anyway. But yes no probs on trains which have large luggage racks as on UK trains. I should imagine Germany would be no different. However I would have thought that most of the time you will be riding it anyway especially in Germany where the cycle lanes and trails are excellent. Don't know about Prague or Poland as a whole. The biggest worry I found, just like in the UK, was leaving it in a safe secure place if you wanted to explore on foot.

Go for it I shouldn't imagine you will experience any problems. Enjoy your tour.
 
Top Bottom