Before you pack, check this list of items prohibited from entering particular countries and regions.
Don't leave your bike at home — take it with you overseas!
Eager to take your cycling hobby up a notch? Then grab your bike and head abroad! From picturesque rides down Amsterdam's cobbled streets to strenuous pedalling through the French Alps — sending your bike overseas is easier than you might think with our international shipping company.
Simply book our bike shipping service before setting off (check if your hotel is happy to accept your trusty two-wheeler before your arrival!). We'll collect it from your door, box it at our depot, arrange customs clearance and deliver it to your destination.
To help you prepare your bike for shipping, we've put together a step-by-step guide to explain the entire process, covering everything from how to get your bike squeaky clean to shipping bicycle accessories.
1. Clean your bike before packing it for shipping
Before packing it for international shipping, you must thoroughly clean your bike*, including hard-to-reach places. If the destination country's environmental agency finds organic matter like mud or grass during inspection, you might have to pay a fine. Plus, cleaning helps us box your bike and ensure you receive sparkling equipment upon arrival. No one wants to unbox a dirty bike!
Begin by removing all accessories and turning your bike upside down, either in your kitchen or garden. Using a paintbrush, apply some degreaser onto the chain, chainrings, gears and cassette. Then, run a flathead screwdriver over the jockey wheels while turning the pedals to scrape off any unwanted gunk. Leave the degreaser on for five minutes.
In the meantime, use a bucket of soapy hot water (with either a mild detergent or some bike cleaning liquid*) and a sponge to clean the frame, handlebars, seat and pedals. Then, wash off the degreaser. If the chain remains a little oily, repeat the process.
Dip a long, thin bicycle detail brush* into the soapy water and use it to poke into any tight places, such as the derailleur and the chainrings. Remove the front wheel, wash the front forks, brake callipers, and tyre, including the spokes and hub. Repeat the process with the back wheel.
Finally, rinse the entire bike using a garden hose or a bucket of cold water and a clean sponge.
*Seven Seas Worldwide doesn't endorse these products.
Use a 15mm spanner for older bikes and turn the nut on the outside of the crank arm...
2. Remove the pedals and any attached accessories
Remove pedals and accessories, including chains, water bottles, and bells, to ensure your bike fits snugly into our boxes and lessen the chance of the container getting damaged during transit.
If the pedals are still attached when we collect your bike, you'll incur an extra charge for their removal at our depot.
Here's how to remove bike pedals and accessories in three easy steps:
- Detach the pedals: insert an allen key into the crank arm with one hand and hold the pedal tightly with the other. Turn the allen key until the pedals detach — clockwise for the left side and anticlockwise for the right. Use a 15mm spanner for older bikes and turn the nut on the outside of the crank arm anticlockwise for the left pedal and clockwise for the right.
- Check your bike for marks: next, carefully inspect your bike for defects, such as scratches or dents. Write them down and take pictures for your records, When shipping bikes, we want them to arrive at their destination in the same condition we received them.
- Measure and weigh your bike: finally, measure your bike to ensure it fits inside our boxes. The maximum dimensions are 85cm height, 155cm length and 26cm wide, which is more than enough space for most bicycles. Then use bathroom scales to determine if it's within our maximum weight of 30kg/66lbs.
3. Pack bike accessories into robust shipping boxes
Now you've removed your bike's pedals and accessories, ship them separately as part of the same order by packing them into sturdy containers. If using our international shipping service, we provide chemically strengthened cardboard boxes ideal for transporting anything from helmets, bells and bike pumps to repair kits, water bottles and lights. You can choose between our Large and Standard sizes (see exact dimensions below). We recommend our Standard box for heavier bike accessories as they are sturdier.
Seal the base of your box by folding in the small flaps, then the large flaps and then seal them shut with three layers of overlapping parcel tape. Repeat the process at the lid once your box is full. Cover everything in bubble wrap and use several layers for fragile accessories like front and back bike lights and reflectors. Add cushioning materials such as towels or more bubble wrap if any gaps exist. Give your box a gentle shake. If you hear a sound, add more cushioning materials. Read our helpful packing guides for more in-depth advice.
61 x 51 x 41cm / 24 x 20 x 16.14 inches
- Sports equipment
51 x 41 x 31cm / 20 x 16.14 x 12.2 inches
- Files and papers
- Children's toys
4. We box your bike at our closest depot
While not a professional packing service, our depot staff will box your bike to a high standard. We use double-walled cardboard bike boxes to protect your adult or child's bicycle during long journeys via road, air and sea.
First, we remove the front wheel and then place the front forks into cardboard supports. Next, we remove the handlebars, cover them in multiple layers of bubble wrap and secure them against the body of the bike using parcel tape. We place two protective cardboard supports onto the back wheel.
Next, we ease the bike into its box. We cover the front wheel's spindles with a foam tube and place it inside a cardboard casing before carefully slotting it beside the bike. Any remaining space is filled with bubble wrap, and cardboard bridges are slotted along the top to strengthen the box further.
Finally, we seal the lid using several layers of parcel tape and label it, ready to be shipped or placed in storage.
Tools needed to securely box a bike:
- Allen keys
- A spanner (for older bikes)
- Pipe lagging
- Lots of bubble wrap
- Packing tape
Tips for boxing a bike yourself
Since we control a global network of depots, we offer a complete door-to-door shipping service. We'll come to your home, collect your bike and then box it at our nearest depot in most countries where we operate. But, in some destinations, our partners will collect your bike. Check your quote to see if this applies to you. If so, it's your responsibility to box the bike before collection.
Start by purchasing a strong bike box* and gathering your tools. Then, remove the front wheels. Typically, you simply need to pull a lever, but if you have an older bike, a spanner will do the job. Wrap every part of the bike's frame in foam pipe lagging*. Use scissors to cut them into shape and parcel tape to secure them. Next, remove the saddle using its quick-release lever, cover it in bubble wrap and seal it with tape.
Next, remove the pedals (as instructed above) and cover them in bubble wrap. Using an allen key, detach the handlebars from the stem. Then, twist them towards the frame and secure them with tape wrapped around the top tube.
Cover anything that remains loose or exposed in more bubble wrap, such as the gears and then place the bike and the front wheel inside your cardboard box. Place the pedals and the saddle into a separate shipping box alongside your accessories (as instructed above).
Finally, add as much cardboard, packing tape and bubble wrap as possible to restrict movement during transit and seal your box's lid with strong parcel tape.
*Seven Seas Worldwide doesn't endorse these products.
5. Book an international bike shipping service
Avoid the headache of dragging your bike to and from the airport by letting our international shipping company take care of it. You won't have to worry about how it's handled, baggage delays, your weight limit allowance, or passing it through customs.
With more than 25 years of experience shipping bikes, golf clubs, skis and various sports equipment and baggage overseas, your goods are in safe hands. Plus, thanks to our global network of depots, we offer a complete door-to-door experience.
Our expert team and multilingual customer service support you at every step of your bike shipping journey.