If you are taking any kind of express train down to Taidong, there’s a very very low chance you won’t be allowed on the train with your bike bagged. Most, if not all, express trains have a “oversized” luggage compartment in the first or last compartment of the train.
Their are trains that allow your bike on board un-bagged. Those tickets must be booked in a few days or maybe a week in advance. I suggest going in person to ask and book these kinds of tickets.
I honestly can’t confirm what “Bike bag available” means. I don’t ever recall anyone getting a free bike bag from train stations to bag their bike. Otherwise, no one would be buying bike bags!
I’m getting mixed messages. Yesterday when I went to the information desk and they started by saying that as long as it’s bagged and does not exceed 150cm in length, then it’s treated as luggage. Then they looked at my departure date, the icon, etc., and changed their position.
Today when I went to the information booth, the (different) lady insisted that as long as it’s bagged, no problem. I also went to the lady at the gate and she assured me that I wouldn’t be stopped at the gate if the bike is bagged.
I’m starting to think that the whole icon thing is a confusing matter and has to do (as the lady today told me) big groups of cyclists.
Does anybody have a number I can call to get a definitive answer? Can anybody provide more instances of personal experiences?
Mind you, I’ve never done this, but I’ve seen pictures of bikes on the trains. I think some trains have special compartments for where the bagged bikes (or even unbagged bikes) go. Even for the trains that don’t have those compartments, I believe you could still put your bagged bike somewhere on the train. The only question is how much babysitting you need to do for your bike. If you’re just bringing your bike on a train that has no special compartment, then you’ll have to find a space for it and possibly keep a closer eye on it. I think that’s what jesus80 did above. Good luck in Taidong!
Okay, I called the TRA at 2-2381-5226. I was transferred to a guy who seemed to know all the rules without having to look them up.
He told me that as long as it’s bagged and meets the size criteria, then taking a bike on a train is okay. Length x width x height cannot exceed 220 cm. Length cannot exceed 150cm seemed to be the most important dimension. So if you take the front and rear wheels off, it should be okay.
He didn’t know why only two trains on the day I want to depart had that icon associated with it. So that’s it, folks!