Cycle carriage costs on the increase at Eurostar

Cycle carriage prices are going up, but Cycling UK members can still take their bikes at a discount
Boxing a bike using Eurostar's facilities at St Pancras
Boxing a bike using Eurostar's facilities at St Pancras

Cycle carriage costs on the increase at Eurostar

On 3rd September 2018, for the first time in six years, Eurostar will increase their costs for carrying all registered luggage, which includes cycles. Cycling UK’s Sam Jones explains the differences and how Cycling UK members can still make a saving.

After six years of static pricing for carrying oversized luggage, Eurostar has had to increase how much they charge. Unfortunately, unless you’re travelling with a fold-up which is no more than 85cm long when folded, if you want to take your bike then you could end up paying more, particularly if you leave it until the last minute.

Currently when travelling with Eurostar, you can either take your bike fully assembled or boxed. Eurostar can provide boxes and the tools to break down your bike at their stations in London, Paris and Brussels, or alternatively you can use your own bike bag/box – and thanks to work by Cycling UK it will be recognised as “luggage” rather than as a “bike”.

Accordingly ahead of the changes on 3rd September, depending on how you planned on travelling with your bike, it would cost:

  • Assembled bike: £30 for same train, £25 for next train
  • In a Eurostar box: £30 normally, £25 for Cycling UK members
  • In your own box or bike bag: £25

Looking to match the overall pricing structure where ticket prices go up closer to departure, Eurostar has now changed it’s pricing structure to encourage people not just to book their seats early but also their bike places (the booking process for bikes remains the same, as described here). The benefit here is that you should have an increased chance of having your bike travel with you on the same train – something which is less likely the closer you book your ticket and bike place to when you want to travel.

It’s still not cheap to take a non-folding bike with you on Eurostar. However if you’re a Cycling UK member and willing to use one of Eurostar’s boxes for carrying your bike, so long as you book in advance it shouldn’t cost you much more than the charges pre-September 2018.

Time before departure

180 to 121 days

120 to 61 days

60 days or less

Eurostar box

£30

£35

£40

Eurostar box (Cycling UK members)

£25

£30

£35

Fully Assembled

£35

£45

£55

Looking at the increase in pricing for registered luggage, even if you use your own cycle-box/bag it can be cheaper to use Eurostar’s own box if you book in advance (especially if you are Cycling UK member), unless you can break your bike down into a bag less than 85cm – in which case you could well save yourself some money and bring it on as part of your carry-on luggage.

Bulky luggage (more than 85cm)

Normal registered luggage (less than 85cm)

£40

£30

It’s worth bearing in mind that these charges are only for Eurostar travel between London, Paris and Brussels, and also on the direct train from London to Amsterdam departing from St Pancras International at 08:31 only. The other Eurostar destinations do not take either oversized luggage or bikes. Returning from Amsterdam to London, and connecting in Brussels, you’re advised to allow 90 minutes for the train changeover if travelling with your bike – and also to make sure your bike is bagged when travelling on the Thalys train to Brussels. For more information check the Eurostar website.

If you’re a Cycling UK member and want to access your discount for travelling with Eurostar, head to the member benefits page.

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