We've compiled for you a list of the most bike-friendly airlines for flying within the US in 2023. Most airlines accept bicycles as checked baggage, although size and weight limits apply, and you are usually required to pay an additional special luggage fee when bringing your bike.
When flying with your bike, note that some airlines will charge both a special handling fee for the bike, in addition to an excess baggage fee, if you are taking a bike in addition to your regular checked baggage allowance. This is often hidden on their websites, so you will get a shock at the check-in desk when being "double-charged" for your bicycle.
Keep in mind that some airlines claim that bikes will fly "Free" if within the baggage size and weight limits. However, that limits you to the size of 62 linear inches, which is usually enough for a kids bike, but your bike box will almost always exceed this size. There are some bags, such as the Orucase B2 and Airport Ninja, that pack to fit within the 62 inch limit, you will most likely exceed it.
Be sure to also take a look at our updated list of Top Rated Bike Bags Boxes and Cases for Air Travel in 2023
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, often the low-cost/budget airlines are actually more bike-friendly than legacy carriers, which charge up to $150-$200 per bike, each way.
Alaska Airlines once again tops our list of most Bike-Friendly Airlines in the US for 2023, as it treats your bike box as a regular piece of luggage, waiving both the oversize and overweight fees if necessary.
Keep in mind that you will still have to pay the standard checked luggage fee of $30 (or $40 if it is your 2nd bag), or $150 if it is an extra piece, but that's it - no special handling fee, no oversize fee, no overweight fee, and no sports equipment fee.
Please note the higher $150 3rd Bag / Extra Piece fee, which has gone up from $100 for a 3rd bag. The new higher fee applies to all flights purchased on/after June 30th 2023.
If you have a free checked baggage allowance, you may include your bike instead of one of your free checked suitcases.
Bicycles on Alaska Airlines are subject to the standard checked baggage service charge ($30 if first bag, $40 if 2nd bag, otherwise $150), or free if within your regular free checked baggage limit. Alaska Airlines will waive any oversize and overweight fees for the transportation of your bike.
Bicycles on Alaska Airlines
One item of bicycling equipment is defined as one bicycle, non-motorized, with single or tandem seats. Alaska Airlines will only accept bicycles in a box or container. Maximum weigh of 99.9 lbs (45 kg).
American Airlines has updated it's bicycle policy, removing it's $150 charge for bicycles, hence it has shot up in our rankings of the Best Bike-Friendly Airlines in the US for 2023. You will now just pay the standard checked baggage fee to your destination, with no oversize fee for your bike bag.
Be sure to note that American Airlines's weight limit of 23 kg / 50 lbs still exists, and you will be charged a $150 fee if your bike weighs more than that.
American Airlines accepts bicycles as checked baggage. As of a few years ago, you can bring your bike free of charge, paying only the standard checked bag fee for your destination, if applicable, as long as your bike weighs less than 23 kg / 50 lbs. If weighing between 23-32 kg (50-70 lbs), a $150 bicycle fee still applies.
You can travel with 1 non-motorized touring or racing bike if the:
Bike is in a hard-sided case, bike bag or box built for bike transport
Handlebars are fixed sideways
Pedals are removed; or
Pedals and handlebars are wrapped in plastic foam or a similar material
Please note that if your bike is not in a hard-sided case, it will be treated as a fragile item.
Delta Airlines no longer charges it's $150 USD bike handling fee, so it has also shot up in our rankings of bike-friendly US-Based Airlines, right next to American Airlines, and remains there for 2023.
Bicycles will be accepted as a piece of regular checked baggage, and included in your baggage allowance - the standard checked baggage fees will apply. Be aware that the 50 lbs / 23 kg weight limits still apply, and you may be charged excess weight fees if your bike bag/box weighs more.
Delta customers traveling with surfboards, bicycles, golf clubs, scuba gear and other large-sized sporting equipment will now be allowed to check them as part of their standard baggage allowance.
The airline is eliminating the $150 specialty sports bag fee previously charged for these items, effective for travel worldwide on tickets purchased beginning July 17, 2019. Customers will instead pay a first, second or third checked bag fee according to the fare rules associated with their booking and/or SkyMiles Medallion status.
Southwest charges a flat fee of $75 USD for taking your bike as checked luggage.
If your bike weighs less than 50 lbs/23 kg and fits within the standard 62 Linear Inches, you can take it for free in place of one of your two free checked bags on Southwest. If that's the case, you will not be charged the $75 bicycle fee.
Unfortunately, a standard bike case cannot be substituted for one of your 2 free checked bags that Southwest offers all passengers, and will incur the $75 bicycle fee.
Bicycles (defined as nonmotorized and having a single seat) properly packed in a hard-sided bicycle box, will be accepted as Checked Baggage for a $75 each way charge.
Pedals and handlebars must be removed and packaged in protective materials so as not to be damaged by or cause damage to other Baggage. Bicycles packaged in cardboard or soft-sided cases will be transported as subject to limited release.
We like Frontier Airlines's straight-forward no-nonsense approach to bicycle fees - you can bring your bike for a flat fee of $75 USD, a welcome breath of fresh air in 2023 when it seems there are hidden fees left, right, and center.
You will not be charged any additional overweight or oversize fees, and no other fees apply. The only limit is that your bike box must weigh less than 99.9 lbs / 45 kg.
Before buying your flight with Frontier for your next bike adventure, just remember to take into account they do tend to charge for just about everything else, including carry-on bags and all checked bags, with overweight fees starting at just 40 lbs / 18 kg.
Non-motorized touring or racing bicycles with single seats. Bicycles must have the handlebars fixed sideways and the pedals removed and encased in a protective, durable case or box. Pedals do not need to be removed if wrapped in plastic foam or similar material.
Items which exceed 99.9 lbs or 109 linear inches will not be accepted.
Allow an extra 30 minutes for check-in.
A checked bike fee of $75 per direction applies regardless of the Fare Option purchased. Overweight and oversize charges do not apply.
Much like Frontier Airlines, Spirit Airlines also has a straight-forward no-nonsense bicycle fee policy - Spirit Airlines will take your bike for a flat fee of $75 each way.
Again, just like Frontier Airlines, Spirit Airlines charges quite a lot for other fees such as bringing a carry-on bag, and their checked bag weight limit is also set at the lower end of 40 lbs / 18 kg that Frontier uses.
You can bring one non-motorized bicycle with a single seat on your trip as checked baggage for an additional charge ($75 each way). Make sure you deflate your bicycle tires for the flight to prevent damage. For their protection, bicycles must be encased in cardboard or a hard-sided bike container for travel.
To add a bicycle to your reservation, please contact one of our reservation centers or visit a Customer Service Agent at the airport. A limited liability release will need to be signed when traveling with a bicycle.
JetBlue will take your bike as checked baggage, for a fee of $100. Unfortunately, this is an increase from JetBlue's previous $50 bicycle fee, hence the reason is has dropped in our ranking of Bike-Friendly Airlines for 2023.
Your bike will also count as one of your checked bags, so you will also be charged for an extra piece as well if you are taking it in addition to a standard suitcase, as if you were paying for an additional suitcase at the same time.
Bicycles will be accepted on JetBlue flights in a hard-sided, padded case designed for bicycles. If not in a hard-sided case, bikes will be accepted with the handle bars secured sideways and pedals removed. The bicycle must also be encased in plastic foam, a cardboard box (domestic flights only), or similar material to prevent damage.
Bicycles on JetBlue Domestic and International Flights
Bicycles will be accepted on domestic and international flights for a fee of $100 per bike each way and will count as one of your checked bags. Excess baggage fees may apply.
Example: A customer purchased a Blue Plus fare and is bringing a bicycle with no additional checked bags. The bicycle counts towards their Blue Plus fare baggage allowance and would have an applicable $100 bicycle fee. A second customer purchased a Blue fare and is bringing a bicycle with no additional checked bags. Because the bicycle counts as a checked bag, the second customer would have an applicable $30 first checked bag fee and a $100 bicycle fee.
Please note: overweight baggage fees will not be assessed for bicycles. However, the maximum allotment of 99 pounds per bag still applies. Bicycle cases should contain bicycles only; cases containing additional items may be subject to excess baggage fees.
Also note: if bicycle and container are less than 62 dimensional inches and under 50 pounds, the bike fee will not be assessed.
Bicycles are accepted to all destinations EXCEPT to/from the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Peru and Port of Spain.
Bicycles ARE accepted on flights to/from Cuba if they are in a plastic, hard-sided, padded case designed for bicycles and no more than 70 pounds and 80 linear inches (length + width + height). A bicycle fee will be applied if the bicycle and container are more than 50 pounds and 62 linear inches (length + width + height). Bicycles that are unsuitably packed or packed in boxes are not acceptable for check-in.