Web guide of resources to what airlines allow you to take aboard your flight to help
you plan and enjoy your trip.
Things You Should Not Bring on Board
These allowances are not definitive but will give you a good general idea of the baggage
allowances of most major US & International airlines.
Due to new Security considerations there is restriction on number of carry on bags. Please check with your
Carry-on baggage must fit under the seat or in an overhead compartment. A good rule of thumb is that the bag
should measure on more than 9" x 14" x 22" (total dimensions) and weigh no more than 40 pounds.
A word of caution: Wheeled suitcases with telescoping handles are very popular today, particularly in the carry-on
size. You may be asked to check these pieces, on certain flights, because there may not be enough room on the plane
for everyone to bring on this type of baggage. Briefcases and garment bags are generally considered carry-on pieces.
Checked baggage should generally not exceed a linear dimension (length + width + height) of 62" and a weight of 70 lbs.
(each piece). Additional pieces of checked baggage may have lighter and smaller restrictions.
Most airlines will allow oversize or overweight baggage or additional baggage for an additional fee which varies
depending on the situation. Please contact a particular airline or visit their homepage for further information.
International flights generally have the same size and weight allowances but may cut down on the number of pieces
that can be checked. Also allowance variations can differ depending on the destination country. Check with the specific airline for more information.
Airline Baggage Liabilities
These are general guidelines which most airline carriers abide by:
Liability for loss, delay, damage to baggage is limited to $1250 per passenger on domestic U.S. flights.
On International flights liability is limited to $9.07 per pound ($20 per kilo) or a maximum liability
of $634.90 per piece of checked luggage. Liability for unchecked baggage is limited to $400.
These limits may be higher if a charge has been paid which specifically values items exceeding these
limits (certain items may not be allowed this excess valuation).
Please be aware that almost every airline specifically states that they cannot be responsible for any
valuable items (e.g. computers, electronic equipment, camera equipment, jewelry, cash, etc.) in checked
or carry-on baggage.
Federal rules allow passengers to claim up to $2,500 if luggage is permanently lost.
Airlines have been known in the past to damage pieces of luggage, perhaps it has happened to you. In the
past, generally speaking, airlines have paid for repairs to most types of damage to luggage. Today things
are changing and airlines are becoming stricter in enforcing the policies regarding the types of damage
they are responsible for.
Things airlines will not cover include: normal wear and tear, minor cuts, scratches, dents, or soiling/loss
or damage to parts protruding from the case (e.g. wheels, feet, pull-handles, flaps, pull-straps)/damage
resulting from oversized or over-packed bags/manufacturer defects.
Airline personnel are not always uniform in enforcing their baggage damage policies. It is best to check
over your baggage upon pickup and make a claim with the airline immediately with regard to any damage you may
Most airlines will not accept damage claims unless they are made within a reasonable time frame (usually within 48 hours). Airlines have greatly improved upon the ways in which they handle passenger luggage in recent years. The majority of damage occurs with poorly constructed bags which literally break, tear, and fall apart through normal usage and handling. For many years airlines have been responsible for much of this damage, but recent changes have allowed the airlines, legally, not to accept responsibility for much of this
damage. Therefore, it is important that you own our well constructed luggage.
Before departure, itemize your bags' contents and their worth, and label the bags with your name, address, and phone number. (If you use your home address, cover it so that potential thieves can't see it readily.) Inside each bag, pack a copy of your itinerary. At check-in, make sure that each bag is correctly tagged with the destination airport's three-letter code. If your bags arrive damaged or fail to arrive at all, file a written report with the airline before leaving the airport.
How to Complain
If your baggage goes astray or your flight goes awry, complain right away. Most carriers require that you file a claim immediately.
FAA Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) At the FAA's site, you can find out where to register complaints about airlines, airport noise, and other problems. You can also pick up info about aviation safety, the shipping of hazardous materials, and many other topics.
View the Transportation Security Administrations' Airline Information Travel Tips.