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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Slowman] [ In reply to ]
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Slowman wrote:
Jason N wrote:
Slowman wrote:
irongirl101 wrote:
Dan, is there a contact at Hawaiian you can pass on who we can get in touch with about this? Ultraman World Champs in November is also affected.


I contacted Hawaiian Airlines both by email, and I spoke a supervisor, and no, they will not be accepting soft bike cases. In both cases the answer i got was no.


Most of the experience from locals has been that if you call the office, they will tell you that it is a strict no soft case policy. But people who have recently asked the airline employees at the check in counter when you show up to the airport all say that they have no idea the policy changed. A friend of mine took his soft case and taped a bunch of cardboard around it last weekend to fly interisland. When he checked in, the airline people were like...WTF? He got too and from Kauai/Honolulu no problem through Hawaiian and I think he didn't bother with taping the cardboard on the way back.

Don't take this as proof that the policy isn't enforced...just that it is *my belief* that this is Hawaiian's way of instantly throwing out any soft case damage claims. They probably talked to a lawyer that advised them if they have a no soft case policy in writing but still let you check in your soft case that they are not liable. As compared to the effort for each customer with a soft case to sign a waiver...because you would depend on the check in staff to enforce it. If they forget, or lose the waiver...then you can claim damages. And as already mentioned, if you are on connecting flights from different airlines, Hawaiian can depend on someone like United to get their waiver signed when you check in. Again...this is only my opinion.


why would you fly hawaiian and take your soft case if this is what you're hanging your hat on?


If every airline paid for damages to your bike in transit...no questions asked...then I could see why you would avoid Hawaiian with your soft case. But the fact is that damages to your bike while in airline transit is for the most part a "shit out of luck" battle regardless of the airline or their bike case policy. They often blame you for packing, TSA, or that your bike was already damaged. It's very hard to "prove" the airline at fault unless you are ultra vigilant. So if you already invested $500-600 in a really good soft case which is 90% as protective as a hard case (read...not a scion case), then you may hang your hat on Hawaiian if indeed they will let you check it in but throw out all soft case damage claims immediately. For locals who have Pukalani status and use the Hawaiian Airlines credit card for miles...Hawaiian is often best option ...especially interisland.

Furthermore, most instances of damage come from TSA opening your case, moving things around and not putting the case back together properly. IMHO, this happens most often with hard clam shell cases because it's possible to just force the thing shut with straps. I have this type of hard case and even for me sometimes I have to take a few extra minutes to shift things around to make sure the case closes properly without anything being smashed. With something like the Thule Pro XT, the zippers make it easy for TSA to open up the case while your frame is locked into the bottom of the case. Then they just zip it back up.

If you ask me, I rather have something like a Thule Pro XT case and a "we'll accept it but no damage claim policy" than my current hard clam shell case that has a "you can claim damages but you'll most likely get two middle fingers" policy. YMMV.
Last edited by: Jason N: Sep 4, 18 13:31
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Jason N] [ In reply to ]
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Jason N wrote:
Slowman wrote:
Jason N wrote:
Slowman wrote:
irongirl101 wrote:
Dan, is there a contact at Hawaiian you can pass on who we can get in touch with about this? Ultraman World Champs in November is also affected.


I contacted Hawaiian Airlines both by email, and I spoke a supervisor, and no, they will not be accepting soft bike cases. In both cases the answer i got was no.


Most of the experience from locals has been that if you call the office, they will tell you that it is a strict no soft case policy. But people who have recently asked the airline employees at the check in counter when you show up to the airport all say that they have no idea the policy changed. A friend of mine took his soft case and taped a bunch of cardboard around it last weekend to fly interisland. When he checked in, the airline people were like...WTF? He got too and from Kauai/Honolulu no problem through Hawaiian and I think he didn't bother with taping the cardboard on the way back.

Don't take this as proof that the policy isn't enforced...just that it is *my belief* that this is Hawaiian's way of instantly throwing out any soft case damage claims. They probably talked to a lawyer that advised them if they have a no soft case policy in writing but still let you check in your soft case that they are not liable. As compared to the effort for each customer with a soft case to sign a waiver...because you would depend on the check in staff to enforce it. If they forget, or lose the waiver...then you can claim damages. And as already mentioned, if you are on connecting flights from different airlines, Hawaiian can depend on someone like United to get their waiver signed when you check in. Again...this is only my opinion.


why would you fly hawaiian and take your soft case if this is what you're hanging your hat on?


If every airline paid for damages to your bike in transit...no questions asked...then I could see why you would avoid Hawaiian with your soft case. But the fact is that damages to your bike while in airline transit is for the most part a "shit out of luck" battle regardless of the airline or their bike case policy. They often blame you for packing, TSA, or that your bike was already damaged. It's very hard to "prove" the airline at fault unless you are ultra vigilant. So if you already invested $500-600 in a really good soft case which is 90% as protective as a hard case (read...not a scion case), then you may hang your hat on Hawaiian if indeed they will let you check it in but throw out all soft case damage claims immediately. For locals who have Pukalani status and use the Hawaiian Airlines credit card for miles...Hawaiian is often best option ...especially interisland.

Furthermore, most instances of damage come from TSA opening your case, moving things around and not putting the case back together properly. IMHO, this happens most often with hard clam shell cases because it's possible to just force the thing shut with straps. I have this type of hard case and even for me sometimes I have to take a few extra minutes to shift things around to make sure the case closes properly without anything being smashed. With something like the Thule Pro XT, the zippers make it easy for TSA to open up the case while your frame is locked into the bottom of the case. Then they just zip it back up.

If you ask me, I rather have something like a Thule Pro XT case and a "we'll accept it but no damage claim policy" than my current hard clam shell case that has a "you can claim damages but you'll most likely get two middle fingers" policy. YMMV.

Why would you show up to your flight with your bike in a soft case not knowing whether they’ll accept your bike? That’s what I’m asking.

Dan Empfield
aka Slowman
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Slowman] [ In reply to ]
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Slowman wrote:

Why would you show up to your flight with your bike in a soft case not knowing whether they’ll accept your bike? That’s what I’m asking.

I wouldn't. As an old hard case owner, I'm not currently in that position. I'm just saying that people have shown up with soft cases after 8/1 (whether they knew the new policy or not) and none of them to my knowledge have been turned away. The people who did know about the policy change chose Hawaiian because it was their only option. It was either pick take the chance or don't come over for a race at all because the logistics of Aloha Air cargo wouldn't work given the time they needed to get/drop off their bike and the hours they are open.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Jason N] [ In reply to ]
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As Hawaiian suspended their policy and accepted soft cases for the race in 2018 is there any chance/indication they'll do the same next year? Curious as I'm looking to book flights and they seem like a decent option but not if i need to buy a new bag.

What was the protocol otherwise if you had been flying on them? Was there a clear option to ship once in seattle/sfo/wherever?

My reason for asking is that i'm flying in from London and will have an airline change in any of the west coast cities I fly into so want to make sure I understand the parameters...


Thank you

________________________________________________________
Taylor Rogers - "Brakes are for quitters."
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2022: IM Vichy
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Slowman] [ In reply to ]
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"Why would you show up to your flight with your bike in a soft case not knowing whether they’ll accept your bike? That’s what I’m asking."

Dan, because I believe my bike is better protected in my Scicon-style framed soft case than a cardboard box. Last weekend my bike shop boxed up my bike, by mistake, as part of the race tune-up (don't ask, someone didn't read the instructions properly). When I came to pick it up and discovered it all boxed up ready to travel I had two choices. Accept the mistake, and be thankful that it was guaranteed to be accepted by Hawaiian this week, or make them fix the error and unbox and reassemble the bike.

After looking at the box job, I rapidly chose the latter. And that's not to say the bike shop did a bad job. They boxed it up just fine, but when I looked at the bike and compared it to the packing I'll be putting around it in my framed bag, there was no question. I've seen the way American baggage handlers stack bike cases, on their sides, on top of each other, and it's not pretty. (In the Lands Down Under we are way more civilised - bike cases are at least stored vertically....)

Despite all that though, I would much rather run the gauntlet with Hawaiian Airlines (and run the risk of a quick hop around to Aloha Air Cargo) than trust my bike to be protected by a layer of cardboard, potentially lying at the bottom of a pile of bike cases.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [irongirl101] [ In reply to ]
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After seeing how many bikes end up having their handlebars snapped in a Scicon bag I would never own one and would trust a box a whole lot more...
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [xcrogers] [ In reply to ]
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I'm over here now and have had no problem. Just pay your $35 and they are fine with it. Have done 2 internal flights so far.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Trigirl357] [ In reply to ]
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Have been traveling also with an evoc bag for 4 years. No damages here. I usually find that either pipe insualation or "foam edge protectors" (google it) secured on with electical tape works really well in stopping any bumps to the frame or stays with very little weight penalty. Just have them all cut for the required sizes so take about 5 minutes to put on once the bike is taken apart.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [msrixon] [ In reply to ]
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I had the bike padded. With the damage that was done, I am pretty sure the baggage handlers took the bike, launched it out of the cargo bay and it landed with the front end impacting the ground. It was unbelieveable. I've heard stories from guys like you that have traveled with them for years and no issues and I have heard from tons of people like me that had horrible damage just before races. The airlines will not pay for any damage. By Hawaiian banning the softbags - obviously they are tired of the complaints about expensive bikes being damaged.
Last edited by: Trigirl357: Nov 7, 18 9:24
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [imdtucker] [ In reply to ]
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TRAVELERS ON HAWAIIAN AIRLINES BE WARNED!!!


imdtucker wrote:
Has anyone actually been turned away with a soft case on Hawaiian recently? I am flying Maui -> Kona -> Maui either side of world championships. No other options for airlines between the islands with bikes. I have a Scicon bag which is certainly my preference to use; but can also access a Thule hard sided box for the trip as well. Given I have a week on Maui before the race, it would be great to not have to dismantle and rebuild my Giant Trinity front end an extra time! Should I chance it with the soft case?

Just was on a flight yesterday Kona->Honolulu. Agent at the gate asked me if it was a bike inside (Ritchey breakaway semi soft case). I said sports equipment, clothes, tools, etc, all true. She said she needs to check with her boss. Boss comes out, says can you open it. I open revealing a wheel visible and some clothes stuffed around it. Boss begins telling me how they "don't accept bikes in soft bags anymore so I can't check it. She was very much 100% uninterested g having any sort of meaningful discussion about it, the fact that it fit dimensions (modified to take off 2in), was under weight limit for normal bag, or even to acknowledge that it was reinforced on 4 of 6 sides. The last one blew my mind, said hard plastic is still a soft case.. her argument once opened was "I see a bike wheel, therefore it's a bike not just bike parts".

Anyway, the result was having to pay an additional $35/bag (2travelers) on top of the $15/per I paid online before AND basically the worst treatment I have ever received ever from an airline industry rep.

Here I was thinking Hawaiian airlines was trying to separate themselves from the other big airlines with better customer service. Very much avoiding them in the future.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Firefoxett] [ In reply to ]
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You're mad because you got called out for trying to play games? It was a bike in a soft case. Your argument doesn't even rise to being semantical.

Favorite Gear: Dimond | TriRig | Desoto Sport | Hoka One One
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [The GMAN] [ In reply to ]
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The GMAN wrote:
You're mad because you got called out for trying to play games? It was a bike in a soft case. Your argument doesn't even rise to being semantical.

I'm simply putting out there that I've flown said case with probably over 30 airlines now and not one has ever asked me to open my bag at check in or argued that a case that meets their dimensions and weight as a normal bag is not allowed.

At the end of the day it's small fry with double fees but I felt worth sharing my story here as many people on this forum have similar setups so they know what to expect.

For reference also they let it through no problem Honolulu->Kona 5 days earlier. And ever flown it in Hawaiian maybe 4-5 other times in the past never an issue. What I would like to know is would putting hard plastic on the zipper side of the case warrant it being a 'hard case'. She was not interested in discussing this with me and it will be interesting to see which cases get denied and accepted in the future as many are 'semi-hard' or so.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Firefoxett] [ In reply to ]
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So, let's make sure we understand the situation here:

1. Per Hawaiian Airlines they do not accept bikes in soft cases.
2. You showed up at airport with a bike in a soft case.
3. Agent asked you if you had a bike.
4. You tried to "fudge" the situation and claim you only had sports equipment.
5. Agent and manager call you on your fudging.

At this point Hawaiian is well within their rights to totally and completely refuse your bike. Period. End of story.

6. However, they allow you to fly with you bike in a soft case.
7. They only charge you minor amount to fly with you bike.
8. You're upset.

Got it. Seems perfectly reasonable...
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [logella] [ In reply to ]
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I'm simply trying to outline this for other reference.

Yes I'm a bit flustered because this policy came into place after I booked my flights much earlier in the year and after I'd flown before with no issue and so I had no reason to believe it would not have any issue. So yes showing up to my flight and being told I can't board because of a policy I was uninformed of, that came into place after I booked was not a fun situation.

I understant it is within their right to turn it away as per their policy and I'm glad she let me sign a liability waiver (totally reasonable for any luggage IMO), I'm just trying let others know (as many are vocal here about their tactics) that Hawaiian not only updated their policy, but also are taking a very hard line on it so be warned those who have plans on Hawaiian and have anything that resembles a soft bike case.
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [TizzleDK] [ In reply to ]
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TizzleDK wrote:
Could just buy a P-5x....
The bundled Biknd Helium case qualifies as a hard case?
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [uucee] [ In reply to ]
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uucee wrote:
TizzleDK wrote:
Could just buy a P-5x....
The bundled Biknd Helium case qualifies as a hard case?

The BIKND is still a soft case.

Favorite Gear: Dimond | TriRig | Desoto Sport | Hoka One One
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [The GMAN] [ In reply to ]
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Anyone have any updated luck flying with a soft case? I fly to Maui on Sunday and am much more comfortable putting my bike in my EVOC case as opposed to a cardboard box...
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [The GMAN] [ In reply to ]
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Southwest just received FAA approval to fly to Hawaii. Hopefully their schedules will start before October. Watch competitor prices drop with the introduction of new competition. And the bike case policy may change if Hawaiian Airlines feels the bite.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/2019/02/27/southwest-airlines-faa-approval-hawaii-flights/3007658002/
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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devashish_paul wrote:
RBR wrote:
I would never fly with my bike in a soft case nor a cardboard box anyways


I have probably flown around 300K miles with my bike in a soft case. Nothing has every happened to it. I've also rode my bike straight up to check in, takenn the pedals off, turned the handlebars, deflated and checked the bike in and reversed that process on the other side several times with no problems at all. Acutally this last approach, they treat it the best. It just gets wheeled up to the baggage pile, put on the top and then gently placed in the aircraft!

2'nd time I flew with my BMC TMO1 in a soft case it came home with a severely cracked frame.....
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [Shambolic] [ In reply to ]
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Shambolic wrote:
After seeing how many bikes end up having their handlebars snapped in a Scicon bag I would never own one and would trust a box a whole lot more...

I agree they do look vulnerable. But with a 60cm frame, I have to take the handlebars off anyhow.

My race site: https://racesandplaces.wixsite.com/tritravel
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Re: Hawaiian Airlines no longer accepts bikes in soft cases [aaronpass] [ In reply to ]
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aaronpass wrote:
Anyone have any updated luck flying with a soft case? I fly to Maui on Sunday and am much more comfortable putting my bike in my EVOC case as opposed to a cardboard box...

Despite the "policy" going into effect last summer, I have not heard one instance of anyone actually being turned down with a soft case. Given the wide breath of people I know who travel with bikes, you would figure a FB rant would have shown up in my feed if it did happen. In the handful of instances where locals I know were aware of the policy, when they asked the actual check in people at the terminal, none of employees knew the policy even existed.

Furthermore, when traveling inter island, 99% of the time you can self check in, and never deal with a Hawaiian Airlines employee. You select that you have a bike case, pay for it at the kiosk, then tag it and drop the bike case off with TSA for inspection. TSA is not responsible for following policy that is specific to one airlines that another airlines doesn't follow.

If you call the Hawaiian Airlines customer service number today, they will likely recite the policy to you. What actually happens at the airport is probably a different story. Hawaiian Air is likely using the policy as a way to squash any soft case claims. Meaning the policy is in place, they might accept your soft case, but any damages, even if it's because an employee rolled over your soft case with a fork lift, is not their liability.
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