many people asked this question on different bikinggroups on the web:
what do i do with my airline box at destination?
some bikefriday tourists use a traveltrailer:
according to reviews found on the web most serious tourers do not like this solution: the trailer is too wide for some roads and they do not like the idea of having to worry about two additional wheels in a different dimension carrying two different spare tires and tubes.
alternative for 26 wheel s&s bikes: there is a soft bag available which can be used as a backpack, price from 200 dollars:
some people pack the bike into a suitcase and leave the suitcase in the hotel in order to pick it up when they return. other people use ups or fedex to send the container to an onward destination. that sounds expensive.
that is why most people use a carton to check it in with the airline. the dimension of the carton must not exceed 62 linear inches(158 cm) and stay under 23 kg. price: from 10 dollars
when you arrive, you dispose of the carton and ride away from the airport
i am still in the process of getting the original shipping materials delivered with my bike when i will pick it up at the end of may from the factory.
what is the experience of other people who have packed and checked in a conforming carton at any airline?
update september 2011:
finally i found the best and even most cost efficient solution that conforms with airline regulations:
i use the original bikefriday carton and the bikefriday carry-on shoulder bag. i cut the carton into 28*22*12 , that is in total 62 linear inches which will be accepted by any airline as normal check-in luggage. the carton can be completely flattened out on the floor, all connecting sides are taped with utility tape. then the carry-on bag is put on top and it looks like a normal suitcase raising no flags with airlines. at destination i can fold the carton and carry it on the rear rack.
here you can see how it looks like: