Forum home Road cycling forum Tours, routes, audaxes & organised rides Tour & expedition

John O Groats return bike transfer

neilrobinsneilrobins Posts: 102
edited April 2012 in Tour & expedition
Being cheap I am looking for a cost effective way to return body and bike to North West when I finish my LEJOG ride.
There are some graet deals on the coach but they dont take bikes. I can't get a quote for the train as it is too soon but I would expect £130. Couriers are around £50. Taxi transfers (just to Inverness) are not cost effective for one person.
What are your experiences/hints/tips?
I will be finishing on the 3rd July, so looking to return on the 4th, anyone want to share costs?

Posts

  • watchfirewatchfire Posts: 174
    Get the bus and post your bike back form Wick? We rode back to Wick and stayed the night there but if you finish early enough in the day you could probably pack the bike, post it then get the bus.
    My classifieds feedback thread for reference

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=40046&t=12946446
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    You'll probably be able to get a cheap train about 2 months in advance. Have a look and see what you can find about 6-8 weeks from now. Breaking journeys up into sections can make it significantly cheaper. When I did LEJOG a couple of years back I paid less than £100 in total for my journey from Sheffield to Penzance and then from Thurso back to Sheffield.

    Not sure how posting would work cos you'd need a box to post it and I'd imagine that the hassle of dismantling a bike and getting it to a post office after you've just done LEJOG won't be too appealing.
    More problems but still living....
  • neilrobinsneilrobins Posts: 102
    Yes the posting way appeals for cost but the logistics of packing etc will be the last thing I want to do. Flights from Inverness are quite cheap but even if you pay for bike on board they won't guarantee there will be space in the hold. If I can get the train fare sub £100 then it's going to be the easiest. I have never taken bike on a train, is it safe?
  • kevinpkevinp Posts: 10
    I have never had any trouble with bikes on trains in Scotland. On the route from Invernes you will need to book your bike space as it is busy, On many long distance routes you have to book any way.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    neilrobins wrote:
    I have never taken bike on a train, is it safe?

    It's pretty safe and pretty easy. It's not 100 per cent safe, but I've never heard of anyone having a bike stolen from a train, and compared to flying, there's a lot less risk of the bike getting seriously damaged. Rail companies aren't keen on you locking the bike to anything, but there's nothing to stop you putting a lock on to discourage thieves.

    Rail tickets are made available 90 days before the departure date, I'd definitely book as soon as possible for the Inverness bit of the journey as this has the reputation for being a bottleneck. You can work out how much the fares will be (more or less) by searching three months in advance from now.
  • barney69barney69 Posts: 82
    I did my LeJog last August www.nigelend2end.co.uk.
    As I wasn't sure if I was capable of finishing within the 9 days I was aiming for I didn't book the return train (to Newcastle) in advance. I therefore booked on the day I arrived in Wick (it has to be a manned station and apart from Inverness I don't think there are any others that far North.
    The problem I had was getting my bike booked on (max 2 bikes/train) and I had 3 trains to catch Wick-Inverness Inverness-Edinburgh Edinburgh -Newcastle. I can confirm they are sticklers for it too.
    It meant I had to stop in Wick an extra night.
    Inverness - Newcastle was approx £110
    There's a bike shop in Wick who will box up and post your bike back for £40.

    I've just checked and if I booked it now for 3 mths time I could get return for £91 - so not saving a great deal:-(

    If you need any other info please drop me a line.
    Regards
    Nigel
    Tourer: 2010 Dawes Ultra Galaxy
    Road: 2011 Trek Madone 4.7
    Fun: 1973 Raleigh Chopper MKII

    http://www.nigelend2end.co.uk
    http://www.purplechopper.co.uk
    http://www.kbcycles.com/
  • neilrobinsneilrobins Posts: 102
    Thanks Nigel
    Posting bike from Wick sounds a great idea as I could then get flight or coach from Inverness the next day without the worry
    Cheers
  • tim_ftim_f Posts: 12
    I booked at the weekend back from Thurso to Newcastle by Train on 18th June.

    As a single ticket it would have been £126.00 but splitting it at Edinburgh this was £15.00 and £10.00 for separate tickets.

    I guess for your journry savings can be made by splitting tickets at Glasgow.

    If one rings up Scotrail telesales they will tell you the date when 'advance' tickets amd reservations go on sale for your date.

    Tim.
  • barney69barney69 Posts: 82
    tim_f wrote:

    As a single ticket it would have been £126.00 but splitting it at Edinburgh this was £15.00 and £10.00 for separate tickets.


    If one rings up Scotrail telesales they will tell you the date when 'advance' tickets amd reservations go on sale for your date.

    Tim, I assume you are going Thurso to Inverness then Inverness to Edinburgh + the Edinburgh to Newcastle leg? so there should be 3 tickets?

    They normally release tickets 3 months in advance.

    PS you can't book bikes onboard using the Trainline website
    Tourer: 2010 Dawes Ultra Galaxy
    Road: 2011 Trek Madone 4.7
    Fun: 1973 Raleigh Chopper MKII

    http://www.nigelend2end.co.uk
    http://www.purplechopper.co.uk
    http://www.kbcycles.com/
  • neilrobinsneilrobins Posts: 102
    Ok decided to post bike from Wick bike shop then fly from Inverness to Manchester, all in less than £100.
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