Baggage, what you need to know about it and how to deal with it: a blog about airline travel, packed with useful tips.
You may have heard of a little thing called excess baggage. Let’s do a quick Q&A:
1. What is excess baggage?
Excess baggage is baggage that exceeds your airline’s checked baggage allowance. It varies depending on your ticket class, destination and itinerary. It can be in the form of overweight or oversized baggage, or simply too many bags.
2. What happens if I have excess baggage?
That’s when things start getting expensive and inconvenient. You’ll be charged quite a bit for your excess baggage (it’s more than just paying per kilo), and you’ll also have to wait at the airport longer than usual as you’ll have to sort out payment at special counters. You also run the risk of being denied access onto the plane because there is simply no room left!
3. How much does excess baggage cost?
It depends on where you’re flying to and from, but fees for excess baggage can range anywhere from $50 – $200 per bag! So you don’t want to be caught off-guard at the airport with extra bags that you didn’t plan for
Travelling with checked baggage
Checked baggage is free on most international flights. It is usually limited to two pieces per passenger; each piece must not exceed 23 kg (50 lbs) in weight or 158 cm (62 in) in size (total of length, width and height).
For additional baggage, airlines may charge a flat fee per extra piece or extra weight. These fees vary widely, depending on the airline and route, but typically range from $50 to $100 for an extra piece of luggage and from $50 to $200 for an extra 10 kg (22 lbs) of weight.
If your baggage exceeds weight or size limits, you will have to pay heavy fees that can easily reach several hundred dollars.
And we’re off! The first thing you need to know about air travel is that it has become a huge hassle. You can’t just show up at the airport and go on your merry way; no, you need to arrive two hours before departure, because now there are security checkpoints with X-ray machines and shoe scanners and stuff like that. (This is all so that they can catch people who try to bring liquid explosives onto planes.)
So you’d better not have any liquids in your carry-on bag. If you do, then when you get to the security checkpoint, take out your laptop computer and put it in a bin by itself. Then remove your shoes and put them in a bin by itself. Then walk through the metal detector. If it beeps, don’t worry, that just means you need to take off your belt.
If the X-ray machine spots any liquids in your carry-on bag, then you’ll have to check that bag. When you land at your destination airport, go to baggage claim, get your bags from the carousel, go outside, and call a cab or find a shuttle bus or something.
You might think that the more people you ask, the better chance you have of getting the lowest fare. But with airline reservations, it is not a good idea to call around to several airlines. Some airlines have “yield management” systems that take into account how many seats are left on a flight and what kind of ticket has been purchased (for example, a full-fare first class ticket vs a deeply discounted coach ticket). If too many calls come in for flights around the same time, the computer will put the fare up.
I know this sounds like an urban myth, but I have had it confirmed by several airline employees (who asked to remain anonymous). Theoretically, if everybody called around to several airlines before buying a ticket, airfares would become more expensive for everyone.
If you’re flying, be sure to check the airline’s website to see if they have any baggage restrictions. Some airlines charge a fee for certain types of bags, like skis or golf clubs, and some do not allow items like these at all. The fees are generally based on the weight and size of the bag, but these fees can vary by airline.
Make sure your luggage is lightweight and small – no more than 50 pounds and no larger than 62 linear inches. This is the maximum size allowed by most airlines. You should also consider using a backpack or duffel bag to store your belongings in rather than a suitcase with wheels. The wheels tend to be heavy and add weight to your bag.
If you are traveling with valuable items, always carry them with you rather than checking them in your luggage. If you must check them because you don’t have room in your carry-on, make sure you purchase travel insurance to cover their value in case they are lost or damaged during transit.
You should always pack a change of clothes in your carry-on bags as well as any medication or other personal items that you may need during a flight delay or cancellation. It’s also a good idea to bring along some snacks and water if you have room in your
Ticket prices don’t include baggage, and the airline will charge you to check a bag. There are a few exceptions. Southwest Airlines allows people to check 2 bags free; JetBlue and Airtran allow 1 free checked bag. Canada’s WestJet allows 1 free checked bag for travel to/from the U.S.
You can bring one carry-on bag, which must fit in the overhead bins or under your seat. It must be smaller than 45 linear inches (or 114 cm) in combined width, length and height, including any handles and wheels. You can also bring one small personal item such as a purse or laptop computer case on board with you.
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