The Burley Travoy trailer for bikes has been in the Burley line for a number of years now but only recently received some design upgrades as well as new bag accessories to cater to various kinds of cargo hauling needs. I received a sample from Burley and have been testing is for the past few months. In short, we use it all of the time.
We live about three miles from downtown where summertime brings a weekly farmers market to town. It has become our Saturday morning ritual to bike down with a picnic blanket and get some tasty treats to enjoy while also getting some shopping done for the week. The Travoy with the upper and lower market bags have been perfect.
Once we arrive at the market we can easily unhitch the Travoy and maneuver it around the market space. It’s nimble and well balanced, even when full of supplies. The mesh sides are stiff and durable for long term use confidence and the see-through nature of the mesh makes it easy to confirm we got everything we intended. The deep lower market bag takes hardier and larger items that can handle being stacked together while the smaller upper bag is perfect for fragile items like eggs.
Both bags are easy to disconnect from the trailer to go shopping in smaller spaces and have handles and shoulder straps. We usually take the bags off when we get home to unload them in the kitchen.
Because we’re working from home more these days, we didn’t use the commuter focused upper and lower bags as much. The Upper Transit Bag is a messenger style bag ideal for carrying a laptop and charger for popping into a coffee shop to get some work done. The Lower Transit Bag converts into a backpack when it comes off of the Travoy for work loads that include a laptop plus binders… or maybe lunch.
For summer picnics, it turns out the new Yeti Roadie 24 hard cooler fits nicely on the Travoy and became a great way for us to bring ice cold drinks and other perishable items (or if going shopping for ice cream by bike).
When not in use, the Travoy folds up and tucks away in the garage, though, we use it enough we rarely fold it all the way down.
One thing to watch out for is the tow arm is limited to how far it can raise up. It can extend, which is great, but sometimes the angles don’t quite match. This came into play when trying to attach the Travoy to a bike with only a little bit of the seat post showing—usually for someone who needs the seat near the lowest position. If the tow arm were able to articulate more, it would be more compatible with bikes in this situation. Also, depending on how much seat post is available, anyone using an under-seat stash bag may have to figure out a new way to manage those items (for me it’s usually my tire repair kit which I don’t want to have to remove each time I want to use the trailer).
Even when the angle is close enough to get the trailer on the hitch, if it’s not perfectly square (because of how the tow arm is angled) it can be difficult to slide the rubber Flex Connector off of the pin it is on. A little bit of moisture dripped down on there can help but it seems getting the tow arm square with the hitch would be a better overall solution.
Burley makes a Travoy hitch that will clamp onto a rear gear rack. As someone who uses a lot of Burley products, I discovered it would be nice for Burley to think about more compatibility across their product line. Specific to this example, I have Burley’s Moose Rack on two of our bikes for the Burley Piccolo tag along. Sure, I can’t haul the Piccolo and Travoy at the same time, but it would be nice if the Travoy could just attach right to where the Piccolo connects instead of needing a separate part so my wife and I could easily swap who is hauling the kid and who is hauling the groceries.