If you need to ship a bike to France (or around France), here are a few options.
When looking to ship your bike or your bike box, it's worth weighing up prices and options as there are many companies out there these days.
Shipping prices generally start at around £60 to send a bike to France, but it can vary depending on the pickup/drop off destinations, bike box size, and insurance cover.
The following information is provided as guidance only. You should do your research, ask all relevant questions of the shipper, ensure your bike is properly insured, and be familiar with the necessary processes should something go wrong (lost, damaged bikes etc). You should also ensure your bike is properly boxed/bagged and insulated.
If you need help ...
If you're not sure how to get your bike to France (or if you are trying to solve the plane/train v shipping, or shipping v hiring question), then we are happy to offer guidance.
You can email email@example.com with:
- your dates
- number of bikes
- bike box size if you have it (or let me know if you need a box/packaging)
- bike box weight if you have it
- any other relevant info (i.e. if you're not sure if it's cheaper/easier to hire, etc)
SHERPR specialises in bikes. They work with a network of international shippers to book your bike in (in English). You can send your bikes from your club or home to anywhere in the world (including Australia and South Africa) and back again. Prices start at £60 one way to and from France (and additional insurance cover is available). They also supply reinforced cardboard bike boxes and packing (delivered to you before you ship) from £37.99 if you don't have your own bike box. Note they do not ship soft-shell bags. See here.
Send My Bag send bikes to and from Australia and South Africa (and to other destinations worldwide) in conjunction with DHL. They also ship from one French destination to another, though this can be expensive. Just check ahead to confirm all costs and any excess duties when you book.
Luggage Mule is another booking service that works in conjunction with shippers.
Parcel Hero was recommended to us by cyclists, and we now use it regularly to ship things to France. We've never needed to use it for our own bikes, but we have used it for a surfboard and we use it to send a big box of the kids' presents home to France after Christmas with the grandparents in the UK every year. There's no dedicated bike option on the site – you just box your bike up securely and ship it like you would any other package. I priced a few bike-sized packages for shipping from the UK to France (and back again) and the numbers stacked up (from around £40 + VAT for a bike-size box from the British Midlands to south-west France, for example).
Quotes are done by box size and weight, so if you have a heavier bike box rather than cardboard or soft cover, it will cost more. Don't forget to get insurance (either via the shipper or your own) as Parcel Hero uses a range of mainstream shippers. Also make sure the B&B/hotel or wherever you're shipping to in France is expecting the delivery in case the bike makes it there before you do.
Still not sure?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll try and help (including seeing if there is a dedicated van service coming to France on your dates).