US Airlines are pretty much evil. They squeeze us into less and less space, take away past perks such as meals and award miles premiums – they act as if it is your privilege to pay them for their increasingly shallower service.
I’ve watched it deteriorate over the last two decades as I have been hovering around the 100,000 mile travel mark yearly since I started working internationally. One of my gravest days was when Continental merged with United – but that’s a whole ‘nother story. I’m here to talk about traveling with a bike.
Once was a time that you could check your cased bike like any piece of luggage, No more – size restrictions have made it almost impossible to get away from extra charges to fly your bike. Of course golf clubs and skis are still exempt. Beer belly execs are safe to transport their sticks and balls at will as are the snow bunnies because – well you tell me why. I have my own theories based on socio-economic biases but that too is another story.
I’m here to chronicle my maiden voyage with an orucase. The manufactures promise that their cases come in under the guidelines of all the major airlines and will be acepted as checked luggage. The case isn’t cheap – $400.00 – but United would charge me 200.00 each way on a flight – so if it works once – it has paid for itself.
You do have to have a smidgen of mechanical aptitude as the disassembly is a bit more involved than your regular case.
The Orucase is soft sided and padded. My bike is an Orbea Orca 57mm – so it’s not a small bike by any means. Here’s the process:
So – I leave for Seattle on Thursday – today is Tuesday – I figured I’d pack the bike a day early in case anything weird happened.
It seems pretty safe as long as nobody goes dropping the thing off a ramp – I’m going to get some duct tape and write on it “please do not drop”. Total weight is 34lbs. well under the standard 50 allowed for checked luggage and it is pretty compact.
We will see.
Updates to come.