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AA Flagship Checkin and Strict Carry On Checks for BA GGL

AA Flagship Checkin and Strict Carry On Checks for BA GGL

Old Dec 10, 19, 3:16 am
  #1  
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AA Flagship Checkin and Strict Carry On Checks for BA GGL

We will be doing our normal post-Christmas trip to Florida this year. I have noticed how tight AA have been lately on checking carry-on before reaching security lines at LAX and elsewhere. Wondered whether there are any nuggets of advice from BA FT members to avoid losing my BA compliant carry-on on our trip this year when checking in for our AA flight segments. We are both TSA-Pre if that makes any difference.

On the way out, our route will be INV-LHR-BOS on BA; overnight stop at BOS; then BOS-MIA with AA. The only concern is at BOS. I understand AA are really strict here, and there's no AA Flagship check in. Are there any tips to avoid the pre-security checks? Worse case if we are forced to check in our BA complaint bags, it's not the end of the world.

On the way back, our route will be MIA-JFK on AA; then JFK-LHR-INV with BA. There's an AA Flagship check in facility at MIA, but they just feed you in at the front of the TSA-Pre security line, so chance that the pre-security agents might pick up our slightly over-sized AA bags at that point. If we get to JFK, then we should be fine with BA compliant carry-on. We will be doing a B2B at INV, so we really need to avoid having to check our carry-on all the way through to INV!

Any experience that other BA travellers can share would be appreciated.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 3:32 am
  #2  
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Originally Posted by billinghamn View Post
Worse case if we are forced to check in our BA complaint bags, it's not the end of the world.
I would say you have given yourself the best advice: make sure that if it happens, it isn't the end of the world. On the return sector they will definitely be OK to check the bag just to T8, and so long as you don't have a very tight connection there then you should be OK from an Inverness perspective.

If you are travelling in a senior boarding group there won't usually be a problem, despite the various tales in the AA forum. I don't think GGL is going to make much difference on the whole, it is possible the CK team will head you off from the main boarding process, but there's no guarantee, and even before the current regime then if the overheads are full, however you want to argue it then your bags have to go into the hold. Tight connections obviously increases this risk.

If you really want to avoid this, then forget wheelies and go with the CWS bag or similar duffel bag which tend to acquire a cloak of invisibility. Ultimately if you actually can get your bag under the seat in front then this problem goes away.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 4:58 am
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by billinghamn View Post
We will be doing our normal post-Christmas trip to Florida this year. I have noticed how tight AA have been lately on checking carry-on before reaching security lines at LAX and elsewhere. Wondered whether there are any nuggets of advice from BA FT members to avoid losing my BA compliant carry-on on our trip this year when checking in for our AA flight segments. We are both TSA-Pre if that makes any difference.

On the way out, our route will be INV-LHR-BOS on BA; overnight stop at BOS; then BOS-MIA with AA. The only concern is at BOS. I understand AA are really strict here, and there's no AA Flagship check in. Are there any tips to avoid the pre-security checks? Worse case if we are forced to check in our BA complaint bags, it's not the end of the world.

On the way back, our route will be MIA-JFK on AA; then JFK-LHR-INV with BA. There's an AA Flagship check in facility at MIA, but they just feed you in at the front of the TSA-Pre security line, so chance that the pre-security agents might pick up our slightly over-sized AA bags at that point. If we get to JFK, then we should be fine with BA compliant carry-on. We will be doing a B2B at INV, so we really need to avoid having to check our carry-on all the way through to INV!

Any experience that other BA travellers can share would be appreciated.
I have a rolling bag that is BA-sized and therefore slightly AA oversized. I've never had trouble with it on an AA flight, and of course you see plenty of other bags similarly oversized.

I would say, if you are going HBO all the way, which is how I read your post, then you don't need to go to check-in at BOS or MIA at all. If you haven't been able to get boarding passes and need to go to the kiosk then you could always do that one at a time to avoid a zealous AA person. Otherwise just go straight to the TSA-Pre line.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:17 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
I would say you have given yourself the best advice: make sure that if it happens, it isn't the end of the world. On the return sector they will definitely be OK to check the bag just to T8, and so long as you don't have a very tight connection there then you should be OK from an Inverness perspective.

If you are travelling in a senior boarding group there won't usually be a problem, despite the various tales in the AA forum. I don't think GGL is going to make much difference on the whole, it is possible the CK team will head you off from the main boarding process, but there's no guarantee, and even before the current regime then if the overheads are full, however you want to argue it then your bags have to go into the hold. Tight connections obviously increases this risk.

If you really want to avoid this, then forget wheelies and go with the CWS bag or similar duffel bag which tend to acquire a cloak of invisibility. Ultimately if you actually can get your bag under the seat in front then this problem goes away.
I wish I could secure "approval" from billinghamv to reduce our hand luggage down to CWS standards, but suspect I would be shouted down. Appreciate the advice however.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:24 am
  #5  
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Originally Posted by tjcxx View Post
I have a rolling bag that is BA-sized and therefore slightly AA oversized. I've never had trouble with it on an AA flight, and of course you see plenty of other bags similarly oversized.

I would say, if you are going HBO all the way, which is how I read your post, then you don't need to go to check-in at BOS or MIA at all. If you haven't been able to get boarding passes and need to go to the kiosk then you could always do that one at a time to avoid a zealous AA person. Otherwise just go straight to the TSA-Pre line.
I can normally check in, and secure boarding passes before getting to the airport. However, I've seen numerous instances where there are AA staff protecting access to the security lines (normally at AA dedicated terminals), forcing everyone to demonstrate that their bags fit into the approved AA sizer. That's irrespective of status or the class of travel. Recently, I have been traveling alone and only had a rucksack, so no issues. Next time it's going to be a different matter.

I know for a fact that I wouldn't get up the escalator at LAX T4, but I have been advised that using the T4 lift (to go up a level to the entrance to the security queues) bypasses the checks performed at the bottom of the escalator. Bear in mind, this is simply an example, and I am not connecting through LAX on this occasion. I understand at BOS, AA are similarly strict.

Anyway, appreciate your advice. Always good to hear the experience of others.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:26 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by billinghamn View Post
I wish I could secure "approval" from billinghamv to reduce our hand luggage down to CWS standards, but suspect I would be shouted down. Appreciate the advice however.
I bet I take more frivolous junk on board than the lovely billinghamv . As others will testify, it's the Tardis of bags, which allows me to keep going with a few of life's little luxuries.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:49 am
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Originally Posted by billinghamn View Post
I have noticed how tight AA have been lately on checking carry-on before reaching security lines at LAX and elsewhere.
For the benefit of others reading this thread, the following may be related:

AA Increasing Carry On Bag Enforcement, Audits (Oct 2019)
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:52 am
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Originally Posted by billinghamn View Post
However, I've seen numerous instances where there are AA staff protecting access to the security lines (normally at AA dedicated terminals), forcing everyone to demonstrate that their bags fit into the approved AA sizer.
Agreed, this is an annoying extra hurdle to jump, but they don't do this everywhere. It's been a while since I departed from BOS, so can't speak for the likelihood of getting nabbed, but as you already said, having to check the bag for that leg won't be a massive issue. I have been through MIA more recently, and have not seen them do it there. Obviously this is where you don't want them insisting on checking you all the way through. However, there are 4 TSA checkpoints into the D concourse (just looked at the map on MIA's website), the leftmost one being relatively remote from check in areas. And I may be wrong, but you might be able to go through TSA into the E concourse, which should definitely avoid AA bag police. It's a bit of an extra walk from E to D airside - 10 minutes or so.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 6:00 am
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From what I see people carry on aa planes I doubt aa has any rules..
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Old Dec 10, 19, 6:24 am
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Originally Posted by ExpatExp View Post
For the benefit of others reading this thread, the following may be related:

AA Increasing Carry On Bag Enforcement, Audits (Oct 2019)
That's really useful - many thanks for providing the link.

Originally Posted by tjcxx View Post
Agreed, this is an annoying extra hurdle to jump, but they don't do this everywhere. It's been a while since I departed from BOS, so can't speak for the likelihood of getting nabbed, but as you already said, having to check the bag for that leg won't be a massive issue. I have been through MIA more recently, and have not seen them do it there. Obviously this is where you don't want them insisting on checking you all the way through. However, there are 4 TSA checkpoints into the D concourse (just looked at the map on MIA's website), the leftmost one being relatively remote from check in areas. And I may be wrong, but you might be able to go through TSA into the E concourse, which should definitely avoid AA bag police. It's a bit of an extra walk from E to D airside - 10 minutes or so.
I think that is sound advice. I may have to suss the security options out when we arrive and work out which is least likely to pull us up on cabin baggage rules.

Originally Posted by Vasco Pridat View Post
From what I see people carry on aa planes I doubt aa has any rules..
Agreed based on what I have seen in the past as well. However, it does appear that the regulator has told AA to improve their compliance to baggage rules, so I'm likely to have to sort this one way or another (or I might just get lucky on the day!)
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Old Dec 10, 19, 7:09 am
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I fly weekly out of BOS on AA and agents do not typically check bag size at security line entrances. They do ask to see your boarding pass to ensure you are correctly entering the TSA PreCheck lane.

GA appear more focused on the number of pieces pax try to bring on board, then slightly oversized bags. Therefore one piece for the overhead bin, one for under the seat and no “third” piece even ladies handbags or slim garment bags.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 1:21 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
If you really want to avoid this, then forget wheelies and go with the CWS bag.
May I ask what this magic bag actually is? Picture maybe?
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Old Dec 10, 19, 1:30 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by mikebg View Post
May I ask what this magic bag actually is? Picture maybe?
It has made a number of outings over the years in this forum, but here's an Amazon link (no rake off for me on this, unfortunately).

Amazon Amazon
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Old Dec 10, 19, 1:57 pm
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Originally Posted by Segments View Post
GA appear more focused on the number of pieces pax try to bring on board, then slightly oversized bags. Therefore one piece for the overhead bin, one for under the seat and no “third” piece even ladies handbags or slim garment bags.
I'd agree with this. Flying out of LAX to PHL recently saw an inordinate amount of hot air from the GA about bag size and that irrespective of class of travel or status oversized bags would be checked. I went and checked my bag and the missus' bag at the adjacent gate's bag sizer and both were fine. When it came to boarding (Group 2) there was absolutely no enforcement and judging by what I saw other passengers bringing on board the higher numbered boarding groups were ok as well.

However, last couple of trips out of LAS the missus has had some nasty encounters with the GA because she's had one too many items of hand luggage. On one occasion the GA was literally yelling at her to "Consolidate those bags!" at which point I simply took her handbag off her, slung it over my shoulder, asked the GA "Happy now?" and we both boarded. The same GA then came onboard and started yelling at other passengers and throwing luggage around to try and get a D0 departure. A nasty piece of work.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 2:11 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
It has made a number of outings over the years in this forum, but here's an Amazon link (no rake off for me on this, unfortunately).

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Skypak-53cm.../dp/B00EHG1C82
I don't quite follow why it is easier to get onto flights with this than with a (same sized) trolley. I guess there most be some reason though!
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