Travelling with a bike

Our guide to travelling with a bike by train

Whether you’re commuting to work or heading on a cycling holiday, we love to welcome cyclists and their bikes, but spaces for bikes can become limited at busier times. Safety is important to us, so we do have some restrictions on where and when bikes can be transported on our trains.

Even when there isn’t a restriction we can’t guarantee that your bike will be accepted on the train, as space is allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. Our staff have the right to refuse a bicycle if there is no space for it to be transported safely. Please be considerate of other passengers at all times.

To avoid delaying trains, make sure you arrive in plenty of time for your train. Station staff can advise you on which of the train doors to use.

You can take a small folding bicycle on any of our trains, as long as there is space for it to be stowed away safely, where it won’t cause an obstruction.

Number of spaces for bikes on our trains

  • Class 158 - two bikes per two-carriage train
  • Class 159 - two bikes per three-carriage train. You must reserve a space for your bike
  • Class 444 - at least three bikes per train
  • Class 450 - two bikes per four-carriage train
  • Class 455 - two bikes per four-carriage train
  • Class 456 - two bikes per two-carriage train
  • Class 458 - no dedicated spaces for bikes. We allow two bikes per four-carriage train
  • Class 707 - no dedicated spaces for bikes. We allow two bikes per train

Stations covered by bike restrictions

Restrictions apply during peak weekday travel times at stations shown on the bikes restrictions map below:
Stations served by South Western Railway covered by bike restrictions

Download the bike restrictions map

You cannot take bikes on or off trains that are due to arrive at London Waterloo between 07:15 and 10:00 or trains which leave London Waterloo between 16:45 and 19:00.

Stations between Clapham Junction, Feltham/Strawberry Hill and on the Hounslow loop, you cannot take bikes on or off trains which are due to leave Clapham Junction between 07:45 and 09:00.

You can take your bike with you at any time to and from most stations on the Guildford-Ascot line. Please see the bicycle restrictions map for more information.

If you are travelling on our London Waterloo to Salisbury/Exeter trains you will need to reserve a space for your bike:

Please book at least 24 hours before you travel.

Non-folding bicycles are not allowed on rail replacement bus services at any time – so make sure to check for engineering work before you travel. Small folding bicycles are accepted if fully folded.

Bike facilities

We have invested in bike facilities across the network and we have bike spaces at a number of stations. We will continue to assess opportunities for improving facilities for storing bikes at our stations.

There are bike hubs at Walton-on-Thames, Brookwood, Ewell West, Fareham, Haslemere, Teddington, Winchester and Woking. These hubs have repair stands, improved CCTV and passenger information.

PlusBike – plan your journey

For help planning your journey with a bicycle, take a look at National Rail’s PlusBike information. It’s free, easy to access and tells you about cycle facilities at stations, the number of cycle parking spaces at stations and onboard, and other things that will be helpful to know for your specific trip.

Download the PlusBike leaflet 

Hiring a bike at the station

If you want to continue your journey from the station by cycling, you don’t always need to take your own bike – we have bicycle rental schemes at certain stations:

  • You can hire a bike at Richmond station 7 days a week – both ordinary hybrid bikes and folding Brompton Bikes are available
  • You can hire a Brompton Bike from Guildford, Woking and Southampton stations, courtesy of our partners Brompton Bike Hire
  • Keep an eye open – we’ll be adding more stations very soon

If you’re visiting London, use your credit or debit card to hire one of Transport for London’s docked public cycles. Find out more about Santander Cycles.

Bike security

For your security we’ve heavily invested in CCTV and improved lighting at a number of our stations. In addition we recommend:

  • Try to leave your bike in a well lit public space and keep it securely locked at all times
  • Security mark your bike – making sure this is clearly visible on your bike will help deter thieves from stealing it
  • Register your bike (the model, make and frame number) – this will help the police if it is taken and they need to track it down
  • Have a clear photo of your bike and an accurate written description of it

Top tips for taking a bike on the train

  • The bike storage area is clearly marked on the outside of the train, but if you can’t find it ask a member of our staff for assistance

  • If you own a folding bike then you don’t need to book a space, simply fold your bike down and store it in the standard luggage areas.
  • We provide bike racks at all of our stations, and most are protected with CCTV
  • At exceptionally busy times, bikes may not be permitted on-board, as outlined in the National Rail Conditions of Carriage
  • Bikes are left at your own risk, and valuables, including lights and pumps, should be taken with you
  • Bicycles that are left in other areas pose a risk to station users and staff and may be removed without warning

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