How to Check Airline Luggage Sizing Requirements

If you are an experienced traveler, you know that luggage sizing requirements and oversize fees vary between airlines. It is always a good idea to check rules for specific airlines. Once you know the size and weight limits for carry-on and check in luggage, you can decide whether you need to check a bag. Learn how to make sure that you will have no problem stowing your carry-on or checking your bags without unexpected charges.

Consider Which Countries You’re Traveling

Luggage sizing requirements vary based on the airlines, stops and destinations on your itinerary. Many airlines limit passengers on domestic flights to one personal item and one carry-on bag. The maximum dimensions for carry-on luggage are typically 22 inches long, 14 inches wide and 9 inches high and the maximum weight is generally 35 pounds. Keep in mind that some airlines have slightly different requirements for carry-ons, limit carry-ons based on fares or charge fees for carry-on bags.

International flights often have lower carry-on luggage weight limits. The maximum weight of a carry-on bag for many international airlines ranges from 16 to 18 pounds or 7 to 8 kilograms. British Airways is a significant exception to this rule, as this airline allows cabin baggage that weighs up to 23 kilograms or 50 pounds. Some international flights allow for slightly larger carry-on luggage up to 46 linear inches, but you might end up having to check a larger bag at the departure gate for domestic connecting flights.

Converting Measurements to U.S. Standards

You may need to convert between the imperial and metric systems of measurement and weight depending on where you are traveling. International airlines often post requirements for luggage dimensions in centimeters and kilograms rather than inches and pounds. When converting luggage measurements, it is helpful to know that 1 inch is 2.54 centimeters and 1 pound is 0.45 kilograms.

If you don’t want to check your carry-on, you should get a bag that meets most domestic and international size requirements and keep weight limits in mind as you pack. While general domestic and international requirements are helpful, check the rules for specific airlines to make sure you can stow your carry-on bag in the cabin and avoid paying fees for checked bags that exceed weight limits.

Check Current Rules for Each Airline

One reason why it is worthwhile to check airline requirements is that the rules for the size and weight of carry-on and checked bags change over time. It is a good idea to keep general domestic and international requirements in mind when shopping for luggage sets. If worst comes to worst, you can take the smaller bags from a set rather than larger hard-sided or soft-sided rollers.

As you pack for a trip, you should factor in your entire itinerary, including all domestic and international flights. Checking the rules in advance can ensure an easy boarding process, make connecting flights a breeze and increase the likelihood that checked luggage will make the trip and be ready for you to claim when you reach your destination.

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