Vague Changes to Cabin Bags Policy

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Old Feb 14, 18, 6:59 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: England
Programs: Etihad Guest Gold
Posts: 86
Unhappy Vague Changes to Cabin Bags Policy

The policy changed around June 2017 but I hadn't got around to posting about it until now because it took my a while to find the copy of the old policy I had saved on my PC. The old policy was much clearer than the new policy which is very ambiguous. The main cabin bag allowances have remained the same but the policy on personal bags and other items allowed in the cabin have become more confusing. I also recall in the second half of last year that some passengers were getting tackled at the gate with some forced to gate-check their bag and charged for it.

Old Policy:

In addition to your hand baggage allowance, the following are carry-on items and can be taken on the flight for free:
  • Handbag, pocket book or purse
  • Overcoat, wrap or blanket
  • Umbrella or walking stick
  • Small camera and / or binoculars
  • A reasonable amount of reading matter for the flight
  • Infant food for the journey
  • Infant carry basket / carry cot
  • Braces or prosthetic devices (provided the guest is dependent on them)
  • Briefcase or portable PC which is not being used as a container for
  • transportation of articles, regarded as baggage (laptops should not be
  • activated without flight crew knowledge)
  • Mobile phone

New Policy:

Personal Items

In addition to your cabin baggage, you may carry one personal item. A personal item is typically your small purse, clutch, camera-bag, stuffed toy or food bottles for your children, or a blanket. Remember that you can only carry one small personal item.

Your laptop shall be placed either in your carry-on baggage or in your personal item and will account as part of your cabin baggage allowance. When travelling with your camera bag, the bag should only contain your camera with a lens and required accessories - such as a charger. For security purposes, your camera bag should not contain any other items (e.g. spare set of clothing, food items or other personal items) and must not exceed 5 kg.

Examples of other items considered as Personal Items:
  • Travel accessories (such as blankets, wraps and leg-rests)
  • Infant carry basket, carry cot or seat-booster
  • Infant food and toiletries
  • Document holder or briefcase
  • Umbrellas or walking sticks
  • Binoculars
Note; My emphasis for discussion.

Where it says: "your personal item and will account as part of your cabin baggage allowance", I'm not sure if this means the weight of your personal item is in addition to the 7kg cabin bag as part of your overall allowance, OR weather it means 7kg total including personal item. But it also mentions that if your personal item is a camera bag, it must not exceed 5kg. I'm hoping that this weight is in addition to the main cabin bag. If not it would mean the mean cabin bag would only be allowed to weigh 2 kg! I have also never heard of such security rules for a camera bag.

To add to the ambiguity, no dimensions are mentioned for personal items. It states "you can only carry one small personal item", however the examples they have given of personal items include: camera bag, laptop bag and brief case which are all much bigger than a pair of binoculars.

To be honest, I have used budget airlines that have had totally unambiguous cabin baggage policies compared this. At best, Etihad's new policy is badly written. At worst, it's intentionally ambiguous to set up passengers for a fall so that they can charge passengers for gate-checking cabin baggage.

Mike
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Old Feb 19, 18, 11:45 am
  #2  
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Sorry to bump this but I would really value how others interpret this new policy.

I know it was a long post so will give you a brief version. Do you interpret the new policy to mean A or B below?:

A: Allowance of 7kg cabin bag plus the weight of 'personal item'?

or

B: Total allowance of 7kg for the combined weight of cabin bag and personal item?

The above is based on the Y policy. I have an upcoming flight and would like top clarify this. I usually carry a cabin bag plus laptop brief case with camera compartment which I always put under the seat. Thanks in advance.

Mike
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Old Feb 19, 18, 5:23 pm
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Join Date: Aug 2017
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Originally Posted by British Balikbayan View Post
Sorry to bump this but I would really value how others interpret this new policy.

I know it was a long post so will give you a brief version. Do you interpret the new policy to mean A or B below?:

A: Allowance of 7kg cabin bag plus the weight of 'personal item'?

or

B: Total allowance of 7kg for the combined weight of cabin bag and personal item?

The above is based on the Y policy. I have an upcoming flight and would like top clarify this. I usually carry a cabin bag plus laptop brief case with camera compartment which I always put under the seat. Thanks in advance.

Mike
I flew EY in Y from BOM to JFK recently and they weighed both my backpack and my trolley bag. They wrote the weight of both on the bag tag for whatever reason and this was the first time I had seen them marking the bags with the weight even though it didn't seem relevant at any point later on. Each bag was under 7 Kg, but together were definitely over 7 kg total. However, I don't know if maybe they let me slide or there are different rules for EY elites.
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Old Feb 21, 18, 12:04 pm
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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I love that I would need to choose to feed my baby OR keep him warm

The check in staff at AUH are so bored with this that they largely ignore it and write 7 and 12 as necessary regardless of the weight. They get screamed at far too often

I recently checked in in F and the lady was dumbstruck when I showed her BA's policy of max 35KG - She had been assured it was a massive risk to all lives and limbs to have more than a spare pair of socks in your hand....
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Old Feb 25, 18, 7:16 pm
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Originally Posted by ss1710 View Post
I flew EY in Y from BOM to JFK recently and they weighed both my backpack and my trolley bag. They wrote the weight of both on the bag tag for whatever reason and this was the first time I had seen them marking the bags with the weight even though it didn't seem relevant at any point later on. Each bag was under 7 Kg, but together were definitely over 7 kg total. However, I don't know if maybe they let me slide or there are different rules for EY elites.
I have had my cabin bag weighed two or possibly three times. I was slightly over and I explained that that the contents were expensive/fragile/valuable and other items not allowed in the hold and they accepted that. I have NEVER had my laptop briefcase weighed. I have got the impression that they are a little more relaxed since I have been able to use business class check-in even when travelling in Y.

Originally Posted by Dogmatick View Post
I love that I would need to choose to feed my baby OR keep him warm

The check in staff at AUH are so bored with this that they largely ignore it and write 7 and 12 as necessary regardless of the weight. They get screamed at far too often

I recently checked in in F and the lady was dumbstruck when I showed her BA's policy of max 35KG - She had been assured it was a massive risk to all lives and limbs to have more than a spare pair of socks in your hand....
I have also heard about the 'falling risk' which seems to be completely contradictory to other airlines having a generous cabin bag weight allowance from airlines such as BA.

Whilst it's good to hear anecdotal evidence, it would be good to get some objective definition. I would love to know how others interpret this policy and whether it comes across as ambiguous to others.

My cabin bag is well under size dimensionally but definitely borderline on weight and I always put this in the overhead storage bins. My laptop briefcase is bigger than a simple laptop bag but it fits under the seat and that is ALWAYS where I put it because I like to have the contents to hand. The items I carry in the cabin are essential toiletries, valuables, important documents, electronics, camera gear and items barred from the hold such as spare Li-ion batteries etc. I take up less overhead storage space than average passenger. I'm a slim and healthy weight and I would feel extremely annoyed if I was pulled up on cabin weight, especially when it's unclear whether the 7kg allowance is for cabin only or is supposed to include the personal item. The old wording was totally clear, the weight of personal items was additional to a 7kg cabin bag. I should perhaps attach my gold status 'brag tags' and hope for the best.

Mike
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