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AA carry on / carryon baggage rules & enforcement (master thd)

Old Nov 21, 16, 9:48 pm
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Last edit by: JDiver
American Airlines Carry-On Baggage Limits
Strict enforcement directive issued 28 August 2015)
American Airlines Carry-on baggage (link)

Q. Why is AA suddenly becoming so picky about sizing bags?

A. AA formulates carry on baggage policy that meets FAA criteria as well as airline established criteria; these are submitted to the FAA and if approved become the airline's policy. If the airline repeatedly violated their FAA-approved policy, they can be held accountable by the FAA. Recently, during an FAA audit, AA was found to be violating its FAA-approved carry on policy.

What can I carry on?

You can bring 1 carry-on bag and 1 personal item per person (exception: infants. Exception: some regional aircraft have insufficient bin space for otherwise "legal" bags, so carry-on bags might be limited, or even prohibited. If the latter, they will usually be "valet checked" airside and delivered at the jetway before you enter the gate area.

Carry-on bag

Your carry-on bag should be:
  • Up to 45 inches (22 x 14 x 9 in or 115 centimeters (23 x 36 x 56 cm) including handles and wheels
  • Able to fit comfortably into the sizer weve provided at the airport
  • Please note, youll also need to be able to lift your bag into the overhead bin
You can travel with horizontal rolling and/or hanging garment bags as your carry-on bag if:
  • They fit comfortably in the bag sizer
  • They measure up to 22" length x 14" width x 9" height or 115cm (56 x 36 x 23 cm)
You can also carry on a soft-sided garment bag of up to 51in or 130cm (length + width + height)

Personal item

Your personal item must be smaller than your carry-on, able to fit under the seat in front of you and can include:
  • A purse
  • A briefcase
  • A laptop bag
  • Similar items such as a tote
Additional allowed items

You can also bring:
  • Outerwear such as coats, wraps and hats
  • A book or newspaper
  • A small bag of food to eat on the flight
  • An approved safety seat for a lap or ticketed child
  • A pillow or blanket
  • An umbrella stroller for a lap or ticketed child
  • A diaper bag for a lap or ticketed child
  • Duty free items
  • Assistive devices (e.g. wheelchairs, walkers, portable oxygen concentrators, CPAP machines etc.)
  • Breast pump
Liquids and restricted items

TSA allows certain duty-free liquids through security in your carry-on bag if theyre properly packaged in a security tamper-evident bag (STEB). If youre traveling with liquids or are unsure about any item, please contact the TSA.

For more, e.g. special items, etc. please use link
Originally Posted by alien View Post
22 x 14 x 10

So today I took measurements of the sizer at my airport... There is obviously some slippage and subjectivity in the eye of (s)he who must be obeyed due to the open ended 1/4" lines outlining the baggage dimensions placed either horizontally or vertically. But, strictly speaking, the outside edge of the lines are 22' and 14". The depth is a definitive full 10 inches from the back board to the inner side of the metal tube running low laterally across the front of the sizer. This is the current sizer that I measured:


22 x 14 x 10

...We are given a 22 x 14 x 9 but there is some room to maneuver. We have 22" and 14" with a very subjective but limited amount of slippage. And there is definitely 10" of depth.

The subjectivity would be greatly reduced if the sizers were constructed, as Delta's, to form a full sided box.

Those on the margin should really test their bags in advance in all of the different positions to see which allows the most favorable view of its size if required to use the sizer at the gate.
See


AA e-mail to customer re: carry on baggage

and


Comparison of USA airlines carry-on limits Apr '25 by Outdoor Gear Lab

and


Airline carry on variances and the new IATA recommended standard

and


New IATA recommended standard vs. current common


[/CENTER]
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AA carry on / carryon baggage rules & enforcement (master thd)

Old Sep 10, 15, 4:12 pm
  #496  
 
Join Date: Jan 1999
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
Trust me when I say (as I did earlier) the FAA dinged AA badly during a recent audit for violating its own (FAA approved) baggage policies; I have it on excellent authority. Badly enough AA sent out a directive requiring adherence to and enforcement of the existing, FAA approved, carry on policy.
The world is NOT black and white but the 'rules' are nearly always applied in a black and white world.

American Corp. may have been 'dinged' heavily but that doesn't prevent using some common sense rulings to not alienate passengers any further who travel the most frequently and for the most part comply with carry ons that fit comfortably in the overhead lockers. Some really do push it with a full upright carryon, a suit bag and laptop bag and thats really not being fair.
It's not unreasonable to expect a slightly easier transit if you choose to be loyal to one airline 'regardless of cost' . We're not asking for smoking slippers, pipe and red carpet . As a consultant (who has been resting for a few months but will be working again soon), time is money and I need to be there in a suitable time without the time delay of retrieving checked luggage and the very real prospect of the bag not arriving (5 of my last 8 times with checked luggage did NOT arrive)

I just measured my Samsonite bag that was advertised as a 'carry-on' bag. It's 22.75 by 14 by 9.25. I tried a Swiss Army bag 2 wheeler a few days ago that was compliant but could barely fit 4 t-shirts, some underwear and a very light pair of shoes and was almost full. (i'm 6'3"). It;s going back to the store. I seriouslyt want to comply but they (AA) and the bag manufacturers are making it very hard.

So I'm choosing to use this bag. Call me an anarchist. Yes, If I get asked to check it because it does not fit, I will comply. What choice have we got?
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Old Sep 10, 15, 6:06 pm
  #497  
 
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Other airlines must have gotten a similar memo from the FAA. Bag sizing at the checkpoint was in full swing at Logan term C this week. Or it could have been B6 pumping up revenue on their new bag fee.
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Old Sep 10, 15, 8:06 pm
  #498  
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
...As to items under seats (the early days of NGBC, items could not be stowed in the foot "pocket" in bulkhead seats, for example) or in seat backs, the FAA must issue a "STC"* allowing that if its not approved yet.

*STC Supplemental Type Certificate (FAA approval doc for aircraft modifications, changes or additions)
Regarding the personal item that is supposed to fit under the seat in front of you: what if you're in J or F where you don't have under seat storage?
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Old Sep 10, 15, 9:25 pm
  #499  
 
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Originally Posted by MIAman3 View Post

So I'm choosing to use this bag. Call me an anarchist. Yes, If I get asked to check it because it does not fit, I will comply. What choice have we got?
for some trips one might use a non-Big 3 airline that still offers 24x16x10
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Old Sep 11, 15, 4:22 pm
  #500  
 
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Blow-in from the BA board here enjoying this thread, as we have recently had an almost identical set of circumstances on BA (new luggage sizing reg + new boarding process + patchy enforcement).

Covered (to death !) in these threads :

Just a couple of points of fact on the BA yellow tags which a couple of people have mentioned ITT:

  • The "yellow" tag goes on your smaller item and indicates (a) a guarantee the item will travel in the cabin; (b) that it should be placed under the seat in front of you. They have also downsized recently to max 40x30x15 cm.

  • There is no "overhead" tag, though many posters in the BA forum think there should be. The bigger bag remains the same size and can be placed in the overhead locker.

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Old Sep 12, 15, 7:23 am
  #501  
 
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what would happen if......?

From time to time i tag a mile run, onto a return from a business trip. In two weeks I plan to return to Ft Lauderdale, from Toronto with the following itinerary:

yyz-lga-ord-sea-dfw-fll.

I have an approved Travel pro roller board (Travelpro Luggage Crew 8 22 Inch), which I have traveled with for the past few years. But have never had to put in the sizer (I assume it fits as it is: 22x14x9 inches, according to mfg).

If they tell me I have to check it to my final destination, how would they handle to fact that it would need to be ticketed: yyz-lga-ord-sea-dfw-fll.

any insight would be appreciated.
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Old Sep 12, 15, 9:46 am
  #502  
 
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Originally Posted by AA Flyer View Post
I have an approved Travel pro roller board (Travelpro Luggage Crew 8 22 Inch), which I have traveled with for the past few years. But have never had to put in the sizer (I assume it fits as it is: 22x14x9 inches, according to mfg).

If they tell me I have to check it to my final destination, how would they handle to fact that it would need to be ticketed: yyz-lga-ord-sea-dfw-fll.
I'm not sure what you mean by approved. If it's the one I have then I don't think it will fit in the sizer, though I haven't tried. The manufacturer does not include the wheels and handles in the stated size but, unless you cut them off, they have to fit within the sizer.

That routing will be an interesting test. I think they have to use two labels and it stands a good chance of mis-connecting. I wouldn't put anything you value in it!
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Old Sep 12, 15, 12:25 pm
  #503  
 
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Originally Posted by MADPhil View Post
I'm not sure what you mean by approved. If it's the one I have then I don't think it will fit in the sizer, though I haven't tried. The manufacturer does not include the wheels and handles in the stated size but, unless you cut them off, they have to fit within the sizer.

That routing will be an interesting test. I think they have to use two labels and it stands a good chance of mis-connecting. I wouldn't put anything you value in it!
Yes, approved by the MFG. (and quite smaller than most that I see carried on!) But i have been using, as carry on, for the last 2 years and have never been asked to put in sizer, and it has always fit in the over head (even no an MD80).

I guessed, that if they want me to "check it" they would have to figure a way to tag it to my final destination (yyz-lga-ord-sea-dfw-fll.). I was just wondering if any had any ACTUAL experience with this type of a situation.

Thanks all.
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Old Sep 12, 15, 12:39 pm
  #504  
 
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Originally Posted by AA Flyer View Post
Yes, approved by the MFG. (and quite smaller than most that I see carried on!) But i have been using, as carry on, for the last 2 years and have never been asked to put in sizer, and it has always fit in the over head (even no an MD80).

I guessed, that if they want me to "check it" they would have to figure a way to tag it to my final destination (yyz-lga-ord-sea-dfw-fll.). I was just wondering if any had any ACTUAL experience with this type of a situation
The enforcement is a bit variable at present according to this thread but is getting stricter and "will fit in the rack" does not trump "must fit in the sizer". It may be sized at the gate at any connection as well. They will figure a way to tag it but there is a chance of a misconnect at each change.

Good luck anyway!
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Old Sep 12, 15, 12:59 pm
  #505  
 
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Originally Posted by MADPhil View Post
The enforcement is a bit variable at present according to this thread but is getting stricter and "will fit in the rack" does not trump "must fit in the sizer". It may be sized at the gate at any connection as well. They will figure a way to tag it but there is a chance of a misconnect at each change.

Good luck anyway!
Thanks for your input.

does anyone have any idea as to what airports are adhering 'strickly' to the new policy ..... and which ones are not (as of today, of course)?
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Old Sep 12, 15, 1:14 pm
  #506  
 
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Wonder if this is one more variable in the war on hidden city ticketing and beyond ticketing.
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Old Sep 12, 15, 3:09 pm
  #507  
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Originally Posted by IADCAflyer View Post
Wonder if this is one more variable in the war on hidden city ticketing and beyond ticketing.
No; its in response to the FAA audit where AA were found not to be enforcing their carry-on rules (as in the wiki). For a good packer it makes no difference for hidden city / point beyond ticketing.

OTOH, the new recommended IATA standard, that may be a very real point - it provides a 40% capacity reduction (see wiki) for the max carry-on bag.

Last edited by JDiver; Sep 12, 15 at 3:23 pm
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Old Sep 12, 15, 3:35 pm
  #508  
 
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If AA gate checks luggage and you are on a flight which will connect to another flight, do you have to pick up (and possibly recheck) at the connecting airport or do they check it through to the final destination?

Does it matter if you're connecting domestically or internationally?
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Old Sep 12, 15, 3:38 pm
  #509  
 
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Originally Posted by richarddd View Post
If AA gate checks luggage and you are on a flight which will connect to another flight, do you have to pick up (and possibly recheck) at the connecting airport or do they check it through to the final destination?

Does it matter if you're connecting domestically or internationally?
I think that if it is gate checked on a regional jet you will always pick it up at the gate and if it is gate checked on main line it will be checked through.
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Old Sep 12, 15, 6:59 pm
  #510  
 
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Originally Posted by AA Flyer View Post
Thanks for your input.

does anyone have any idea as to what airports are adhering 'strickly' to the new policy ..... and which ones are not (as of today, of course)?
Flew from CLT to PHL Aug 28th and they were asking people with larger bags to use the sizer. They also refused boarding to those with more than allowed number of bags until they could consolidate to two bags. The following Friday they did not seem to be enforcing as much if at all.
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