One of the good things of being part of a tour like the ones we do in Vietnambiketours, is that you can forget about all the logistics problems and you only have to focus on pedaling and enjoying. Still there might be some adventurous riders who want to go on their own. If your legs are too tired and you need a public transportation or if you are traveling to a far away part of Vietnam, you have several options.
If, you want to get quickly to any part of Vietnam, you can fly with your bike with Vietnamese airlines such as Vietnam Airlines, Vietjetair and Jetstar. As a general rule:
1) You have to position the handle bar along the length direction of the bike.
2) Disassemble and pack bulky parts like pedals, lamps, etc.
3) Deflate your tires (unless you want them to burst with the pressure)
4) Detach the front wheel. This is not always required, but some airlines have a length restriction, so it’s safer if you do it.
3) Put your bike inside a box (this is not always a rule, but it’s safer for your bike). It’s easy to get a box for free in any bike shop, just plan that a few days before your trip.
This option is quick, but airlines clarify that they are not accountable for any damage on your bike and it is likely that not everything is perfect when you pick it up in the airport. Also, you must be aware of the size and weight restrictions, which vary depending on the airline. Also, make sure you book the sport equipment option in advance and it doesn’t hurt to call the airline and tell them the characteristics of your bike to avoid nasty surprises at the airport.
Motorbike and bicycle transportation in Vietnamese trains works really well and it is a very affordable option. You just need to bring your bike to the rain station and buy a ticket to send it in a special train, usually full of motorbikes but with a few bicycles on it. Vietnamese people can hardly be away from their motorbikes and many of them send them by train if they are traveling to another part of the country for a long time. It usually takes a few days, so you have to plan it in advance, and it might get a bit busy in the train stations but it is a reliable service and inexpensive, taking your bike from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City will cost you around 300,000 VND.
Buses and public vans
You shouldn’t have any problem in loading your bike in a van or bus… as long as they have enough space. If you can, you should book it in advance, it is not uncommon to even see motorbikes being carried in the luggage space underneath the bus, so a bicycle shouldn’t be an issue. In public vans in more remote areas, they will also be willing to carry it on top of the vehicle for a small fee, although you should be prepared to see some scratches on your beloved bike.
They are quite common in Vietnam specially in the Southern part, in the Mekong Delta, and there is no problem puting your bike in, since motorbikes, cars and buses are also loaded.
As you can see, getting your bike anywhere in Vietnam is not difficult, but it can sometimes cause some trouble and damage it. In Vietnambiketours, we take care of all these logistics, that are more difficult to handle if you don’t know the country well.