If you want to go on vacation with your bike and you have chosen Copa Airlines to take you to your travel destination, know that the national airline of Panama gives you the possibility of transporting this equipment on board its aircraft.
To take your favorite bike on a trip, the first thing to do is to choose an airline that will accept to carry your bike for free as standard baggage. The good news is that there are such carriers. Airlines still treat bicycles as sports equipment and accept them for carriage either as part of their checked baggage or as additional excess baggage.
The rules for transporting bicycles by plane on Copa Airlines flights
The rules specify weight and size standards (check the baggage allowance allowed on your reservation for weight and size limits). In this allowance, you will be able to store your packed bike and bag, as well as a repair kit and spare tires. Of course, provided that your bike is not too heavy because if you exceed the authorized weight, you must pay a supplement to be allowed to transport it with you on the plane.
Bike checked fee: So is there a charge for transporting your bike on a Copa Airlines plane?
If overweight or oversized, a fee of 180 USD will be charged by COPA Airlines. And if you’re a ConnectMiles PreferMember or Star Alliance Gold member, you only pay $150.
Bike packing: how to pack it for the plane?
In order for your bicycle to be taken in luggage, it must be dismantled and packaged for transport.
If you have a heavy-duty bike bag, its design allows you to store your bike without removing the rear wheel. True, the size in length will be rather large. Some bags have compartments to store the frame and wheels.
However, these bags are only useful if you have a place to store them at home between trips and, most importantly, a place to store them while traveling. That is, when you arrive in an unfamiliar country, you need to leave this suitcase somewhere. Don’t take it with you all the time.
More experienced travelers simply buy thick polythene and wrap a packed bike around it. Someone before the trip takes the boxes out of the bike in the store.
When checking your baggage, Copa Airlines may ask you to sign a Release of Liability form. Study the rules of the airline and specify in which cases this is done. For example, when transported in a box, the airline accepts your bike without any discussion, but if the bike is wrapped in a soft bag or film, signing a Claim Release is a prerequisite.
– Disassemble a bike for the plane
Before packing, the bike must be properly disassembled. The two main requirements for air travel are unscrewing the pedals and deflating the wheels. Both conditions are stated in the rules of all airlines and only attempt to pump rights if you haven’t removed the pedals or are putting the bike back on with inflated wheels.
Remove the handlebar and screw it to the bike frame. If you’re packing in a box, you can just turn the steering wheel 90 degrees.
Lower the seat post as far as possible. It is advisable to put the front and rear wheel supports in a separate bag, and not leave them on the wheels. In a few hours of flight, these small parts can unscrew and get lost in luggage. Finding a replacement will not be easy.
To twist everything into a compact design, use harnesses and shipping tape. It is best to use a special tape that does not leave sticky marks on the bike.
You then need to stock up on empty plastic bottles and hide all the protruding ends of the bike and fragile parts in them.
Be sure to remove the rear derailleur. And with the chain you put it in a cut liter plastic bottle. A two-liter bottle or a five-liter cut is placed on a fork.
Usually turning the fork and moving inward is enough. But sometimes, when you need to hide the bike in a compact bag, you even have to remove the plug.
Some bike models have a plastic bezel around the large front derailleur spider. During transportation, it will definitely be split. Wrap with foam and cut along a two-liter bottle.
Put all extra baggage in hand luggage
Since you only have a backpack for other things, try to send as much gear as possible with the bike.