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Airline Baggage Fees and Restrictions for Domestic U.S. Travel

By February 20, 2012 November 1st, 2012 One Comment
Luggage at airport

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Keeping track of the latest in U.S. airline baggage fees and size limitations can be confusing.Which airlines check bags for free? Who charges the most? What is the cutoff for an overweight bag fee? The following tables were created to summarize relevant airline baggage fees for economy travel between domestic U.S. locations. If you hold an airline credit card or are in the military, you may qualify for fee exemptions (See related links below).

The first table compares checked baggage fees. These charges are per person, per bag, for each leg of travel.  If you choose to fly with multiple airlines between your departure and final destination, the fees will reapply.

Airline Checked Bag Fees and RestrictionsThe second table summarizes fees associated with luggage exceeding a reported weight. Again, these charges are per person, per bag, for each leg of travel. Most airlines specify a maximum acceptable weight per bag.

Airline Overweight Bag Fees

Airline baggage dimensions

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The third table compares baggage fees for luggage exceeding specified size restraints. These size restrictions are reported as a summation of dimensions. To determine this value for your bag, measure the length, width, and height, and add the values together. Certain airlines list preferences for each dimension. For further information, see the links at the end of the post.





Airline Oversize Bag Fees and RestrictionsThe fourth table summarizes the number of personal items and carry-ons allowed per person, as well as carry-on size dimension limits.  Personal items generally refer to a smaller article, such as a purse or laptop bag, that fits under the seat in front of you. Carry-ons are typically larger, and fit in the overhead bin above your seat.

Carry-On and Personal Items RestrictionsWhat is not counted as a ‘personal item’?

  • Food in disposable packaging for consumption during flight
  • Walking canes, crutches, collapsible wheelchairs
  • Umbrellas
  • Strollers or child restraint seats meeting FAA standards
  • Cameras
  • Jackets
  • Diaper Bags
  • Reasonable amounts of duty-free merchandise

The above information is accurate as of February 20, 2012. Please note that changes may occur before you travel. Please check your airline website for the most up-to-date information before your departure using the links below.

Related Links: