Since airlines have discovered that fees for checked baggage are a good source of income, passengers now try to optimize the dimensions and weight of their carry-on luggage.
This means that some airlines now rigorously and strictly check the dimensions and weight of carry-on luggage. Therefore, it is advisable to find out the maximum dimensions before purchasing carry-on luggage.
We have researched the carry-on luggage dimensions for 80 airlines to provide you with a convenient carry-on luggage calculator.
Simply enter the dimensions of your trolley, suitcase, bag, or backpack, and the luggage calculator will tell you which airline allows you to carry your hand luggage without any problems and where there might be issues:
Does not fit:
Most airlines do not check the carry-on luggage of passengers or only do so by eye. Therefore, variations in size of 1-2 cm are usually not critical. Even 5 cm is often tolerated by airlines such as United, American, Lufthansa, and others. However, there is never a guarantee that it will work.
Pay special attention when flying with low-cost carriers. Especially, trolleys are often checked for size, and sometimes weight as well. Therefore, it’s important to pay attention to the total weight, including the contents.
The following dimensions and weights for carry-on luggage correspond to the current information that applies to the majority of airlines:
- Length: 55 cm
- Width: 35 – 40 cm
- Height: 20 – 25 cm
- Weight: 5 – 8 kg
On average, carry-on luggage can weigh about 8 kg. Some airlines allow only 6 kg, while others allow up to 12 kg, and some airlines accept your carry-on luggage without weight restrictions. However, the luggage should be able to be placed in the overhead compartment without assistance.
When it comes to dimensions, you always have to make a compromise, otherwise, your carry-on luggage can only be very small. The sweet spot for the majority of airlines is 55 x 40 x 20 cm.
The size of the carry-on luggage depends on the nature of the baggage. There are special cabin trolleys available in stores that are tailored to standardized dimensions. With these, you don’t have to worry about measuring. You just need to keep an eye on the weight.
Of course, you can also use a larger shopping bag or a weekend bag. The main thing is that it complies with the specified dimensions.
Number of Carry-On Items
Regarding the number of carry-on items, airlines generally agree. Except for a few budget airlines, almost all airlines allow you to carry one large piece of carry-on luggage on board. In addition, many airlines allow you to bring a personal item.
This can be a handbag, but also a laptop, a walking stick, a coat/jacket, a collapsible walker, and similar items are allowed. Some airlines are more generous and even allow a small backpack as long as it fits under the front seat.
For parents with children under two years of age, an additional item is allowed on board. This can be a Maxi-Cosi, a baby carrier from the stroller, or a collapsible stroller. The frame of the stroller must be checked in at the aircraft or at the oversized baggage counter.
Exact Information from the Airline
These are the general standard specifications that apply to the majority of airlines. However, it is highly recommended to check the conditions of your airline before your trip. Each airline offers the service on its website, where you can find information on the exact dimensions and weight.
You will also find the exact definition of the respective airline regarding carry-on luggage and further information, such as whether a laptop can be carried, or information for parents.
Low-cost carriers, in particular, take these requirements very seriously, as excess weight is immediately subject to significant fees. Also, some airlines like to change their information, so it really makes sense to inform yourself in advance.
Once everything is checked and the luggage complies with the specified dimensions and weight, there is nothing standing in the way of a relaxed flight.