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BICYCLE ILLINOIS
TRI-STATE TOUR
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ILLINI WEEKEND GETAWAY
RAGBRAI® TRANSPORTATION

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Chicago Facilities and Services
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From Chicago to the Start of RAGBRAI
From the End of RAGBRAI to
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POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
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The following policies and procedures apply to our transportation service both from Chicago to the start of RAGBRAI and from the end of RAGBRAI to Chicago.

  • Click Here for more information about planning your individual arrival and departure.
  • Click Here for more information about our transportation services.

Getting to and from Chicago
We can easily support participants using arriving and departing Chicago using any mode of transportation, public and private.

  • Click Here for more information about our main transportation staging point and other facilities and services in Chicago.
  • Click Here for more information about individual arrival and departure.
  • Click Here for more information about our transportation staging points.

Local Public Transportation
The main transportation staging point in Chicago is within walking or biking distance of all local public transportation options in Chicago. In fact, we strongly recommend avoiding driving entirely to get to and/or from the entire event if possible!

  • Click Here for more information about local public transportation.
  • Click Here for the earliest arrival and latest departure times in downtown Chicago for all CTA L and Metra train lines.
  • Click Here for more information about long distance public transportation.

Long Distance Public Transportation
If you will be travelling a long distance such as from the east coast, west coast, or even internationally, travelling through Chicago and using our RAGBRAI transportation service can be an extremely convenient and cost effective option. Chicago largest public transportation hub in the entire midwest and home to the closest major international airports to RAGBRAI - O'Hare (ORD) and Midway (MDW). Flying through Chicago may be a much better alternative to flying through the Omaha, Quad Cities, or Des Moines.

If you will be travelling by means of long distance public transportation we have some VERY STRONG PLANNING RECOMMENDATIONS to save yourself a significant amount of hassle:

  • Plan on arriving in Chicago no later than the Friday before the start of RAGBRAI and departing Chicago no earlier than the Sunday after the end of RAGBRAI. ABSOLUTELY DO NOT PLAN ON ARRIVING IN CHICAGO THE MORNING WE ARE DEPARTING OR LEAVING CHICAGO THE NIGHT WE ARRIVE BACK. Before the start of RAGBRAI we cannot wait for you to arrive if you are not at the main transportation staging point in by the time we are ready to depart Chicago. We also cannot guarantee our travel schedule, particularly our arrival time back in Chicago after the end of RAGBRAI, and we will not be responsible for any fares you may lose or additional costs you may incur if we do not arrive back in time for you to fulfill your individual travel schedule.
  • If you need to spend the night in in Chicago, you should stay at the supported hotel. We can pick up and drop off your bicycle directly there and many other participants also will be staying there as well.
    • Click Here for more information about arriving in Chicago before the start of RAGBRAI.
    • Click Here for more information about arriving in Chicago after the end of RAGBRAI.
    • Click Here for more information about the Chicago hotel.
  • Ship your bicycle and do not carry it with you at all.
    • Click Here for more infomation about transporting your bicycle aboard long distance public transportation.
    • Click Here for more infomation about bicycle shipping.
  • Drop off your fully assembled bike with us as part of our our pre-event bike drop-off before the start of RAGBRAI to make things easier Saturday morning.
    • Click Here for more infomation about our pre-event bike drop-off.

Arrival and Check In
The check in and loading process will consist of checking in, attaching our identification tags to your bicycle and baggage if necessary, preparing and loading your bicycle, loading your baggage, boarding our vehicles, and the final head count. We estimate that it will take an hour to and hour and a half to load all bicycles and baggage. Checking in before the start of RAGBRAI will not automatically check you in after the end of RAGBRAI - you will need to check in both times.

In order to maintain consistent arrival times at our transportation staging points and mid-route stopping location every year our actual arrival times at the start of RAGBRAI and back in Chicago will vary each year based in the actual towns that are selected as the start and end of RAGBRAI.

  • Click Here for more information about checking in.
  • Click Here for more information about our transportation service arrival and departure plans.

Participants Staying at the Chicago Hotel
Because the Chicago hotel is too far from the main transportation staging point to quickly, easily, or safely transport both your bike and baggage between them yourself we will have an additional transportation staging point directly at the hotel. You must pre-register to use our Chicago hotel transportation staging point otherwise you must use the main transportation staging point.

  • Click Here for more information about the Chicago Hotel Transportation Staging Point before the start of RAGBRAI.
  • Click Here for more information about the Chicago Hotel Transportation Staging Point after the end of RAGBRAI.

Bicycle Identification Tags
We will use different colored identification tags attached to your bike to quickly and easily identify your drop off location in the RAGBRAI starting town and/or in Chicago after the end of RAGBRAI. These tags will be supplied in your registration materials based on information you provided to us when you registered and will significantly assist us properly staging and loading bicycles in the proper order and as well identifying which bikes should and shouldn't be loaded amid the the throng of other bicycles and baggage, particularly in the RAGBRAI ending town. These tags must be attached around a permanent part of your bike (such as your frame or seatpost) and not something removable such as your wheels or saddle bag since we may rewuire you to remove these anyways as part of preparing your bike for transport.

Drop Off Location in the RAGBRAI Starting Town

Identification Tag and
Baggage Sign Color

RAGBRAI Main Campground
Grey
Bubba's Pampered Pedalers
Blue
Pork Belly Ventures
Purple

Drop Off Location in Chicago After the End of RAGBRAI

Identification Tag and
Baggage Sign Color

Main transportation staging point
White
Parking garage
Yellow
Chicago hotel
Orange

Before they can be loaded, every bicycle must have a pre-printed Bicycle Illinois identification tag attached for each direction you will be travelling. If you will be travelling round trip to the start AND from the end of RAGBRAI, we require that both identification tags be attached to your bicycle before it is loaded in Chicago to prevent individual loose tags from getting lost during RAGBRAI or forgotten in a piece luggage buried at the bottom of a pile at the end of RAGBRAI. No bicycles will be loaded without an appropriate identification tag attached. It will be your responsibility to make sure that your bike has the appropriate identification tag(s) on it before it is loaded. If you forget a tag or if it comes off in transit or during the week of RAGBRAI simply let a staff member know at check in and we can give you a new one.

We will not require identification tags for people or their baggage. Participants themselves won't need to wear an identification tag on their wrist which will increase your comfort while riding. Instead you can just tell us if you belong with us and we will also identify you during our final head count before departing. We also will not require identification tags for your baggage because you will be loading your own baggage yourself onto the coach bus which you can easily identify yourself.

Transportation Means

People Transportation
Participants will travel aboard either a charter coach bus or one of our support vehicles. We will not be using any long distance public transportation carriers (Amtrak, Greyhound, MegaBus, etc.) to transport people and you will not need to purchase any separate bus or train ticket on your own.

  • Click Here for more information about our people transportation means.

Bicycle Transportation

  • Click Here for more information about our bicycle transportation means.

Baggage Transportation

  • Click Here for more information about our baggage transportation means.
  • Click Here for more information about our baggage transportation policies and procedures.
  • Click Here for more information about baggage types and identification.

Not including carry on items, the size of each participant's baggage must be limited to 5 square feet so all baggage can fit in the baggage compartments underneath the coach bus. Based on extensive experience we fully expect this space to be fully adequate and there will also be additional space inside the bus itself to store any carry on items. For reference, the dimensions of a big green army style duffle bag is about 1' x 1' x 3' (3 sq. feet). In the very unlikely event we run into a problem with insufficient baggage capacity in the coach busses themselves, we also can put any extra baggage (which will be minimal) in the bike truck itself or in any open space inside the coach bus, particularly if there are any open seats.

If you are planning on using RAGBRAI's free semitruck to transport your baggage between stopping towns during the event, Click Here for more information about their baggage transportation policies.

If you are planning on using Bubba's Pampered Pedalers charter service during the week to transport your baggage between stopping towns, you will be allowed two pieces of baggage not to exceed 30 pounds each.

  • Click Here for more information about Bubba's Pampered Pedalers charter service.

If you are planning on using another charter service during the week to transport your baggage between stopping towns you should make sure your baggage is in compliance with the baggage policies of that charter service.

We will load all baggage going to the same drop off location as one group in separate bus compartments so that we can quickly and easily unload them together. We will have signs posted on each coach bus baggage compartment door so you know the appropriate place to stow your baggage and these signs will also be color coded to match the color of the identification tags on your bicycle.

Event Communications
Cell phone reception during RAGBRAI can be unreliable because the cell phone towers serving the towns RAGBRAI passes through can be overwhelmed, particularly the overnight towns. If you need to contact us, it is best to plan on making calls during the day when you are on the road. Also, a text message is much more likely to go through than a phone call.

  • Click Here for more information about our event communications policies.

Bicycle Illinois Merchandise
In order to remember your journey and share your experience with others, a Bicycle Illinois t-shirt is included in registration.

  • Click Here for more information about our t-shirts.

Bicycle Illinois jerseys, water bottles, polo shirts, baseball hats and extra t-shirts can all be ordered before the event.

  • Click Here for more information about Bicycle Illinois merchandise.

Other Services

Other than the route in the RAGBRAI ending town we will not provide any services such as SAG vehicle support, mechanical or medical services, or in town transportation.

  • Click Here for more information about charter service during the week of RAGBRAI.

Click on one of the links at left for more overall information about our transportation service.

P.O. Box 8454 • Chicago, IL 60680 • (877) TOUR-ILL [868-7455]
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