Posted 31st Jan 2023
There’s a lot to think about when planning a holiday or short trip - each airline has its own rules regarding hand luggage and will happily charge you extra if your bag doesn't fit within those limits.

The last thing you want before you jet off is to incur additional charges (and lots of stress) by not checking your luggage dimensions and weight restrictions.

I’ve rounded up the most up-to-date hand luggage information for a selection of airlines along with links to the baggage info so it's easy to double-check for yourself! Additional baggage allowance can always be purchased ahead of time if you need it - it's usually much cheaper to book it in advance, rather than to be charged extra on the day you travel

British Airways Hand Luggage allowance

Cabin baggage - what's included:
  • 1 Cabin bag. Maximum size: 56x45x25cm with 23kg weight limit
  • 1 smaller personal item handbag or laptop bag up to 40 x 30 x 15cm including handles, pockets and wheels.

You can book flights here

easyJet Hand Luggage

Cabin baggage - what's included:
  • 1 x Small bag. Maximum size 45x36x20cm, including handles and wheels.
  • No weight limit, but it MUST fit under the seat in from

If you’d like to bring a large cabin bag on board (max. 56 x 45 x 25 cm, including any handles or wheels), you have the option (at additional cost) to:

  • select an Up Front or Extra Legroom seat or
  • NEW: book a large cabin bag for your flight

You can book flights here

Jet2 Hand Luggage allowance

Cabin baggage - what's included:
  • 1 small personal item - such as a laptop size bag or handbag to be placed underneath the seat in front of you
  • 1 Cabin bag weighing no more than 10kg. Maximum size: 56x45x25cm including the wheels and handles.

You can book flights here

Ryanair Hand Luggage allowance

Cabin baggage - what's included:
  • 1 x Small Bag. Maximum size 40cm x 20cm x 25cm. This can be a handbag, laptop bag, or small backpack.

"Priority & 2 Cabin Bags" Passengers with Priority & 2 Cabin Bags, a Regular Fare/Flexi Plus or a connecting flight ticket can bring 1 small cabin bag which must fit under the seat in front of them (40cm x 20cm x 25cm). Priority customers can also bring an additional 10kg bag on board which must fit into the baggage sizer (not exceeding 10kg and dimensions 55cm x 40cm x 20cm) and will be stored in the overhead locker.

You can book flights here

TUI Hand Luggage Allowance

Cabin baggage - what's included:
  • 1 piece of hand luggage per person (excluding infants) weighing up to 10kg.
  • Maximum size: 55x40x20cm

Things like laptops, handbags and items bought at the airport must fit within your 1 piece of hand luggage.

Check out the hand baggage allowances for other airlines:


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  1. Avatar
    Please provide suggestions for small bags (not cabin bags) for low cost airlines like Ryanair, easyjet etc. and from where to buy.
    They check the size of your bag as you board, but also let you take on a bag from the likes of WH Smith airside, so you can use that bag for some things.

    Take two Aldi bags on the flight with you, as they never check them (presumably unless you make them look humongous). Use one as your small bag & have the other folded up flat incase you need it. If it's in your pocket, it's not weighed. Even just put your laptop bag & a pair of (filled) shoes inside the one you initially use. I tend to swap sandwiches to the airside WH Smith bag.

    Wear as much as you can to board. Once on, you can take your coat/layers etc off & put them in the Aldi bag/s , as they've checked the size already. Dont put anything breakable in the bags as you need to squash them with your feet under the seat Infront, or use the space next to you too if the seat is empty.

    If the flight is very cheap & you are likely to use both bags, buying the seat next to you can be considerably cheaper than hold luggage. It also lets you veg out a bit better. (This might not work now it you can't buy specific seats at low prices).

    If I'm going somewhere cold, I board wearing boots but swap into trainers, & the boots go in the bag too. Aldi bags handles fit nicely over the extending handle of my wheeled case.

    I normally pay for one cabin case & have the small free one, & that tends to be enough.

    It kinda became a game, & the largest thing sneaked on was two badminton racquets (which should be impossible).

    Before covid I flew often (only once to the canaries since), am a couple of pages from the end of my passport, and probably averaged about 16 flights a year (2/3s IAG & a third on cheapos where the luggage game largely takes place).

    I've never paid an excess baggage charge (but sometimes had hold luggage).

    Other advantages of doing this are you dont have to wait at the carousel, and your luggage is with you so can't disappear. More likely to get a taxi quickly too.

    The only potential downside is (other than Ryanair who tend to give priority boarding with paid cabin baggage), I tend to wait sitting/reading until I'm in the last few to board.

    Occasionally this means there's no space left for the larger cabin bag & it has to go in the hold (which then is free), but you're stuck with the carousel. So you need to figure out how busy the plane will be rather than sitting to the end if the flight looks packed & you dont have priority boarding.

    Leave the flight with massive bags & a bigger wallet/smile.
  2. Avatar
    for people with kids, Easy jet also counts Trunki's as a small bag
  3. Avatar
    EasyJet has turned into Ryanair as of late, which is a shame as they used to be good. Their new bag policy is an annoying example of this. Lately, I’ve noticed very few people paying for Speedy Boarding (which was always an an ironic name) and as such, the overhead lockers are usually empty so why not just let people puts slightly larger bags in them for free?
    Because if they were free (near) everyone would bring a large cabin bag and then there wouldn't be room. Probably.

    Plus they want to make money.

    The answer to the inefficiency you mention would be to reduce the price of speedy boarding/large cabin bags so a few more people bring large cabin bags but not too many. (Buuut the airline may have done the maths and found that then people then don't buy hold luggage (having bought large cabin bags instead) see above re money)... (edited)
  4. Avatar
    I wish you could buy a cardboard sleeve to check hand luggage size. That would make things a lot less stressfull!

    Maybe all kids at schools should make them for there first metal work / wood work projects. (edited)
    Have we now lost the ability to use a tape measure/ruler?
  5. Avatar
    I love that they will charge £8 to take a cabin bag out and £35 to bring it back. Sneaky buggers
    I'm confused. who does this?
  6. Avatar
    Who'd have thought BA would be leading the way!
  7. Avatar
    I see the other side too - the shambles cause by people trying to cram their overlarge bags into the lockers and the cabin staff starting to confiscated bags for the hold as there's no more room inside. All takes time and causes hassle. As well as income generation there is a practical reason for limiting the size of carry on luggage.
    Luggage doesn't half bump up the headline cost of the flight (especially Ryanair!)so it's important to work through the booking and ending with your final price including luggage. Can be cheaper to add a single hold bag during the booking process.

    The game is simple - know what the rules are and follow them, or disregard them and prepare to take it on the chin if you get caught
  8. Avatar
    You can carry on food (and duty frees) in a separate bag.
    Take a bag for life to the airport to fill with any meal deals and drinks you buy in the departures lounge. You don't have to cram those items in your single item of hand luggage.

    The same with any medication, most airlines should allow it in a separate bag.
    Check if you need a covering letter from your GP, especially for any liquids like insulin, and needles or other medical devices.
    I've done the same and taken bag of stuff bought at airline on board and that was with no checked bags as I had 2 cabin bag seat and crammed a week's clothes into a max sized overhead locker bag and had a stuffed full rucksack too

    However they could actually refuse/charge for the bag containing the airline bought stuff if it doesn't all fit in your allocated allowance

    From those listed in OP, only TUI seem to make it clear

    "Things like laptops, handbags and items bought at the airport must fit within your 1 piece of hand luggage"

    I.e. warning to leave space just in case or be prepared to pay extra for it (edited)
  9. Avatar
    Thanks for this! Just to say, I've flown loads of times and have never gotten stopped due to backpack size. I've seen people board with really bulky bags and tbh I think Ryanair employees don't get paid enough to bother making a faff about it.

    That being said - if your bag is slightly oversized, you tend to get away with it easier when you have a laptop backpack instead of a travel rucksack.
    Airport staff actually get commission/vouchers from each additional charge they apply so it is alway in their interest to catch passengers out. I find they are lenient over here but far stricter abroad. Where your bag may be accepted/ignored flying out, be prepared to be caught out on your inbound flight if your case dimensions to not comply
  10. Avatar
    FYI with Ryanair it’s cheaper to add bags later in the booking process, after seat selection (if you don’t need seat selection that is), instead of selecting it on the first step (example below, £10 saving):

    Also, if you are travelling with someone and do not buy a seat each, after the booking is complete yoy can go back in. There will always be an empty seat next to one if you.
    So you can buy one seat
    You can look to buy a seat just over 2 hours before you fly. By then everyone will be checked in. There will still probably be an empty seat next to one of you (if the plane us not full) or 2 seats free somewhere else. You can then just sit in them. (edited)
  11. Avatar
    Yep always check all the small print on stuff like this and measure. Went with Eurowings last year, it's fairly strict on their cheaper level (I think 40x30x15 but don't quote me on that) and it's surprising how tiny that is. I saw a few people getting charged and doing a lot of shouting - note, the German side is stricter than the UK side from what I saw so it might only be a nasty surprise on return.
    They love rules in Germany.
    Cross on a green man, wait on a red man, even if there's no vehicle in sight for 2 miles.
  12. Avatar
    I've flown a few times lately (easyjet) and they are checking all them small pull along cases, I got lucky as I squashed it in but now I just use a soft backpack. Still put it into overhead locker once on the plane.

    If they just charged an extra £5 each way I'd buy it but most times its £25 or more
  13. Avatar
    im flying with hand luggage only with ryan air. theres no weight limit just dimensions limit right?
    I've never seen a bag weighed by them.
  14. Avatar
    Watch out for easyjet as unlike BA they split their luggage types. Paid for large hold case with easyjet for golf clubs as this is what’s needed for BA. Then discovered easyjet considers them to be small sports equipment. Rang up to upgrade and pay the difference but they refused, apparently it’s in their internal T&C’s but not detailed in passenger ones. Only option is to buy another sports item. I’ve a good mind to take an old large case full of bricks and then lose it at the carousel!!!

    Fortunately my job provides another means to get my money back in kind from them.
    This is just one of many reasons why I despise flying. At every turn there’s a challenge or complexity designed to trip you up and cost more money. It’s not even the cost that bothers me, rather the deceptive tactics used to profiteer.

    In your example, literally any other industry would be happy to let you upgrade for free rather than trying to con you out of more money through what is essentially an overly elaborate system designed to complicate what should be a very simple process (edited)
  15. Avatar
    Hi all,

    Quick question for Ryan air hand baggage Dimensions.
    I found this bag which is slightly bigger but in the comments they mention that it's allowed in Ryan air

    Inateck 40L Super Large Hand Luggage Travel Backpack Laptop Backpack for 15.6-17 Inch Notebooks, Flight Approved Backpack Cabin Backpack for Weekender…fch

    Did anyone experience this?
    Yeah they don't really check
  16. Avatar
    For info, just got back from Australia, Qatar have reduced baggage allowance for return flight. Used to b 30k now 25k
  17. Avatar
    Wish all the airlines would make their standards for Baggage the same..
    They should actually be forced by law to do this. Passengers have a lot to deal with these days to need to worry about what bags goes into which flight. Absolute shambles.
  18. Avatar
    Great post, got stung as wheels wouldn’t fit in the tray for EasyJet a week ago, £80 for two bags going out then £40 for 2 going back.
    Should have just broken the wheels off the bags. Probably cheaper.
  19. Avatar
    Really helpful post, ta op
    Thanks @samwants2save glad it's useful
  20. Avatar
    Yet the airport operators don't bat an eyelid when the 20 stone plus man & wife board the plane.
    What's a 20 stone + why'd it need a man & wife to board the plane?
  21. Avatar
    Nice work OP

    Airlines like Qatar, Etihad and Emirates are also very popular. Their rules/regs would be handy.
  22. Avatar
    Use those vac bags for packing in a small case, fill them with clothes not air.
    And how you gonna pack them again before flying back?
  23. Avatar
    Hi all, flew last year with Easyjet and purchased one of those cabin max backpack things - fitted under the easyjet seat without issue (and I crammed it)

    We are flying next month with ryanair, I'm guessing the rules with size are more or less the same (as in, small backpack under the seat?)
    Certainly sounds like a question a read of the OP will answer.
  24. Avatar
    It's all nonsense. Airlines should be required to have a set rule across the board for this stuff for clarity if nothing else. Especially for people who find it hard to keep up with all the different standards. Many older people find it hard enough trying to deal with apps and e-tickets/boarding passes etc now. They don't seem to mind if you buy a shed load of duty free onboard

    Heat for OP efforts (edited)
    This is the classical British way ; create useless rules to fine customers.
    They intentionally try to complicate things to confuse people so they lose money.
  25. Avatar
    Why is this listed under the deals section, so annoying
  26. Avatar
    We are flying with vueling to Barcelona from Gatwick later this year and they allow one underseat bag (40x20x30 cm), they charge €14.50 per bag per flight for cabin bags (max. 10 kg and 55x40x20 cm) to go into overhead storage and €43 per flight per large bag (20Kg) in the hold.
    It looks like they charge a different price at booking time and later when you are checking in online for bags, worth investigating.

    If they catch you with too many bags or too big or too heavy the charges are steep:

    If your fare includes an underseat bag only and you carry a second piece of hand luggage that you have not booked, it will be checked in and you will be charged a fee of EUR 30 at the check-in desk, or EUR 40 at the boarding gate, providing that the item does not exceed 10 kg and 55x40x20 cm. If the underseat bag exceeds the permitted size (40x20x30 cm), it will be checked in and you will be charged a fee of EUR 30 at the check-in desk or EUR 40 at the boarding gate. If any of the pieces of hand luggage exceeds the permitted size (10 kg and 55x40x20 cm), it will be checked in and you will be charged a fee from EUR 70 at the check-in desk or from EUR 80 at the boarding gate. If you carry more than 2 pieces of hand luggage, each extra piece will be checked in and you will be charged a fee from EUR 70 at the check-in desk, or from EUR 80 at the boarding gate.
  27. Avatar
    49464096-k620A.jpgAnyone here have the 30L Cabin max (bought for Easyjet) and tried it on Ryan Air?

    We bought the Cabin max's last year, and they fitted perfectly for easy jet (I proper crammed mine too). I've seen that Ryan air have a smaller bag size, but obviously with the bag being fabric, it'll be easy to squeeze in. I don't want to re-buy another bag! (edited)
  28. Avatar
    Thanks greatly for the post. Think everybody by knows by now it's all a rip off to get more money out of your wallet. Just had a holiday with easyJet and bought new luggage as the ones I had were too big for the cabin. Now found out as I am flying with Wizzair I have now got to buy more luggage to accommodate their bag sizes. If the same model of plane is used for Jet2, Ryanair Wizz etc and the hand luggage has to fit under the seat in front surely the the size under the seats must be the same. So why so many different Sizes??
  29. Avatar
    Only a matter of time before they start putting people on scales and charging per KG

    They do it in Formula 1 with helmets in hand, it will be us with luggage in hand next year….and standing room only! (edited)
  30. Avatar
    Excellent discussion thread OP. Thank you ✈️
  31. Avatar
    Love this website so many helpful people and posts. Thanks Millarcat
  32. Avatar
    There's a backpack in Primark that fits ryanair cabin bag size perfect, and only £15. We've been using it for the last couple of years and take great pleasure in proving it's fit in their little box
  33. Avatar
    Is this a deal?
  34. Avatar
    I fly with Ryanair a lot and it’s been many years since I last recall them checking peoples hand luggage size at the boarding gate
  35. Avatar
    Ok, now I really think hotukdeals is better than slickdeals!
  36. Avatar
    Great idea! Always handy to have it in one place.
  37. Avatar
    Very handy information thanks
  38. Avatar
    Thanks for sharing this.
  39. Avatar
    Scandi air terrible for no carry on baggage
  40. Avatar
    Thank you for this post. We're travelling with Ryanair one way and easy jet the other. Both are rubbish with cabin luggage. I have 2x the perfect size 55x45x25 and can't even use any of them.. Added bags to go in the overhead would cost 200 quid in total. We're only going for 5 days so a couple of little bags will have to do. 🤷
    Could you get a bag / suitcase couriered over to your accomodation? Might be a lot cheaper then bringing it with you on a plane.
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