Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
GrumpyOldCyclist
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Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby GrumpyOldCyclist » 15 Sep 2017, 7:00pm

Posted for a friend ...
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We're hoping to cycle to Shrewsbury at mid term. Ferry to Holyhead (from Dublin) and then cycle. We only want to cycle one way. Unfortunately, as you know, the ~@~@% at Arriva will only take two bikes, so we can't get the train to Holyhead. In the West of Ireland, we have hired a private minibus, the guy took the seats out, put our bikes in the back and us in the front, and also we have hired another minibus thing with a bike trailer behind. Do you know of any English companies which do similar things?
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Can anyone help with this query?

eileithyia
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby eileithyia » 15 Sep 2017, 7:44pm

Date? Number of bikes? One-way van rental, take all the bikes / one driver, rest of party on train?
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

thirdcrank
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby thirdcrank » 15 Sep 2017, 7:59pm

As eileithyia implies, the number of riders and bikes is important. A long wheelbase Transit Crewcab will seat six with space for their bikes, I think. I'm not sure that a minibus with some seats out would be any better in that more people = more bikes so I suspect 6 is probably the optimum for a tranny-sized van. AFAIK, this type of vehicle is quite easily available for hire because it's a type often used to take workpeople + equipment, to a site.

The utility cyclist
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby The utility cyclist » 15 Sep 2017, 9:42pm

I just transported and fully serviced 5 riders across the Alps including their luggage for 7 days (around 4 bags each), spare wheels, camping chairs (weren't needed and took up loads of space), food/drinks (80+ miles and 10,000ft every day minimum), everything including a camping gas stove. We used a VW transporter crew cab, std size. it works out a heck of a lot cheaper than a LWB variant.
They'll be coming back with bikes and luggage only, 6 bikes would easily fit in a std size transit/transporter.

problem is that Holyhead isn't exactly a central hub for car/van hire so a one way hire with drop off in a relatively remote place could cost a hefty chunk.
another alternate is seeing if you can get a private hire to transport you using say Ford Tourneo Custom in shrewsbury These are 8 seaters IIRC but the rear most seats all come out.

Airsporter1st
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby Airsporter1st » 16 Sep 2017, 10:20am

thirdcrank wrote:As eileithyia implies, the number of riders and bikes is important. A long wheelbase Transit Crewcab will seat six with space for their bikes, I think. I'm not sure that a minibus with some seats out would be any better in that more people = more bikes so I suspect 6 is probably the optimum for a tranny-sized van. AFAIK, this type of vehicle is quite easily available for hire because it's a type often used to take workpeople + equipment, to a site.


I've been looking into buying a 9 seater (typical minibus size), but even with the seats removed, its still a minibus = more expensive insurance and no doubt higher rental cost.

If I was going down the one-way hire route, I'd get a crew cab van, as you suggest.

simonhill
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby simonhill » 16 Sep 2017, 10:32am

Difficult to answer without knowing the scale of the problem/challenge.

You could look for "a man with a van" in Shrewsbury to transport bikes and if space in the cab, one or two riders to Holyhead. The rest of the group on the train. Most towns have guys with white vans that do small removals, house clearances, etc. Normally fairly cheap.

PH
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby PH » 16 Sep 2017, 12:38pm

Couple of options in this thread, though i suspect they're not local enough to you for them to be economical, depending on numbers. The one I recommend in that thread took a group of us from Derby to Holyhead, for the LLC, and it worked out cheaper than the train even if that had been an option. If there's 10+ in the group it might still be worth getting a quote. My local CTC Member Group has just used them to bring a group of 34 back to Derby from Skegness, using two minibuses and a 7.5 ton truck, again it worked out cheaper per person than the train.
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=106390&p=1016995&hilit=minibus#p1016995

The utility cyclist
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby The utility cyclist » 16 Sep 2017, 1:30pm

Given the OP mentions them jumping in the front with rear seats removed it would appear that numbers are 5 or fewer.
Here's one minibus private hire

http://www.gocarz.co.uk/minibus-hire-shrewsbury
The other alternative and probably cheapest but more long winded is hire a van from Shrewsbury on return day (£25 for a SWB transit I just checked) drive everyone down with bikes, return the van and make your own way back to holyhead.

GrumpyOldCyclist
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Re: Bike transport by minibus, van or similar? (Shrewsbury to Holyhead - Nov 2017)

Postby GrumpyOldCyclist » 16 Sep 2017, 7:33pm

Thanks everyone. This is for a family of 6 - two adults and four children the oldest of whom is 13.


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