Rigid bike bag question
I'm off to the Etape de Legende soon and planning to fly. This leads to three questions for me:
1. would I be nuts to put my bike in a padded bag as opposed to a rigid bag?
2. does anyone know anywhere where I can hire a rigid bag from? I plan to ask around amongst my few cycling contacts and also down at the LBS, but just in case, I wondered whether there were any commercial hire companies for this sort of thing?
3. does anyone have any useful experience/tips re flying with bikes? It looks as though I'll go Easyjet...will I need to pay excess baggage, or warn them in advance?