Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Extra Charge for Bicycle on Virgin Australia Flights?

I have never been charged extra for taking my folding bicycle on domestic (to Brisbane) or international flights (Beijing, Hamburg). But I wanted to check before turning up at Sydney Airport for a flight to Perth on Virgin Australia, as the excess baggage fees can be high. The Virgin website says:
"If you are travelling on a Saver fare with only sporting goods you will be required to purchase a checked baggage allowance for each separate piece you are carrying."
That would indicate my checked baggage allowance can't be used for a bicycle and I have to pay extra. So I called Virgin and they said that I could check my bicycle in for no extra charge. When I asked what the sentence meant, they did not know. It makes me feel a lot better to know that Virgin don't understand their own terms and conditions. ;-)


Tom Worthington said...

Virgin sent me the following on bicycles as baggage, which is very clear, unlike their website:

If you are travelling with sports equipment on a Virgin Australia domestic or short haul international flight, all sporting equipment will form part of your checked baggage allowance, 1 piece up to 23kgs, and therefore additional bags may be required to be purchased prior to check-in.

It is mandatory that all bikes are suitably packaged in either a hard or soft case, or a manufactured bike box for travel.

For full details on packaging your bike, please visit the following link and scroll down to 'Travelling with a bike' ...

If required, all Virgin Australia ports have bike boxes for sale for $15.00, payable at check-in. Guests travelling with bicycles must check-in no later than one hour prior to departure, to allow enough time for the bike to be packed correctly.

You are certainly able to pre-purchase additional baggage to increase the number of pieces in your allowance. Please note that the maximum weight of each piece is unable to be increased and Guests who are entitled to 23kg pieces will be charged an overweight fee for each piece between 23kg and 32kg.

Additional baggage can be added to your booking for $30 per piece. This can be done online via our website, or by calling our Guest Contact Centre. An additional service fee of $35.00 per person per booking will apply when adding baggage over the phone. This can be done up until 30 minutes prior to your departure, as long as you have not checked-in through a check-in counter at the airport.

You are also welcome to bring one piece of carry-on baggage, not exceeding 7kgs or the dimensions of 23cm in depth, 34cm in height and 48cm in length, free of charge.

Gold and Silver Velocity Members will receive one additional bag with the weight based on the cabin of travel. Platinum Velocity Member will receive two additional bags with the weight based on the cabin of travel. Velocity baggage entitlements will be based on Status at time of travel and will not display on the travel itinerary or e-ticket.

For more information on our checked baggage allowance, please visit the following link ...

Adam said...

Hi Tom - I wonder if you could give me the email address or source of where this came from. I'm worried I'm going to get pinged by this strange rule when our family flys with bikes next year.

Tom Worthington said...

Adam. the Bicycle rules for Virgin Australia I was referencing are at: http://www.virginaustralia.com/au/en/plan/baggage/oversized-fragile-items/