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Guide to Suitcase & Luggage Sizes [Updated for 2021]

Want to know what suitcase sizes to pick for your next travel? Need help to decide which luggage to buy and why? Our comprehensive guide to all carry-on & checked-in luggage sizes will help you pick the right suitcase for you.

Lightweight Travel Bag

With so many suitcase sizes out there, it can be a daunting task to understand which is the best cabin luggage, lightweight suitcase or best travel backpack for your needs. Do you need a large suitcase or a small suitcase? What is the best size and why? How many clothes can I fit in which suitcase? Do you need to purchase hard shell luggage or lightweight carry-on luggage only?

In this article, we will explain the suitcase sizes and help you understand what type of luggage you need and for what purpose. The perfect suitcase size depends on where you are travelling, for how long and which airline you are travelling with. Each trip might require a different suitcase, hence there are so many different luggage sizes.

We know how much we struggled to find the best suitcase size for our long haul flights and road trips across Europe. Let's dig in and find the most suitable suitcase size for you.

Table of Contents

Recommended:

How to measure suitcase sizes

I find that the best to get this out of the way first. You only measure suitcases one way - the way the airline will measure it.

How to measure the external suitcase size:

  • Find a measuring tape.
  • Place the suitcase on the floor.
  • Measure the height of the suitcase from the ground to the top of the carry handle.
  • The length of the luggage measured at it's largest points including wheels, pockets.
  • The width is measured at the widest part of the suitcase include wheels and pockets.
  • Don't include the pull-out handle when you measure your suitcase.

Remember, the measurements which come with the suitcase are always the external dimensions. Manufacturers won't always give you the internal measurements of the suitcase.

How to measure a suitcase

How to measure the internal suitcase size (volume):

  • Find a measuring tape.
  • Place the suitcase on the floor, fully open.
  • Measure the height of the suitcase from edge to edge.
  • The width is measured at the widest part, edge to edge.
  • The depth of the luggage measured from the rim to the cover.
  • Measure both sides, as the top usually smaller.

Now, to get the volume of the suitcase (internal capacity) multiply the values you measured for sides of the suitcase and add up the results. The result is the volume of the suitcase.

Height x Length x Depth = Volume (top)

Height x Length x Depth = Volume (base)

Volume (top) + Volume (base) = Suitcase Volume

How to measure internal suitcase size

What is the difference between volume and capacity?

These are the same and interchangeable. We often say volume when we talk about how much space you have in the suitcase and capacity when we talk about how much stuff you can really fit. I am sure I am not the only one who tried to fit an extra sweater in even when my suitcase was already full.

Capacity > Volume

Average Suitcase Sizes

I have put together a list of the most common suitcases sizes for you. When looking for suitcases online or in the shop, have this chart with you.

Remember to check the exact sizes of the suitcase to ensure they fit the airline allowance as well as the internal capacity (volume).

Size Height Width Depth Capacity Travel Time
Small Cabin suitcase 45cm / 18inch 32cm / 13inch 18cm / 7inch 30-40l 1-2 days
Large Cabin Suitcase 50cm / 20inch 36.5cm / 14.4inch 23.4cm / 9.2inch 40-45l 2-3 days
X-large Cabin Suitcase 56cm / 22inch 38cm / 15inch 24.5cm / 9.5inch 40-50l 2-4 days
Medium Suitcase 60cm / 24inch 43cm / 17inch 26cm / 10.5inch 60-75l 4-7 days
Large Suitcase 69cm / 27inch 47cm / 18.5inch 35.5cm / 14inch 100-117l 7-10 days
X-Large Suitcase 81cm / 32inch 55.8cm / 22inch 35.5cm / 14inch 120-130l 7-14 days

Standard Suitcase Sizes - Comparison

It's important to remember that a hard shell luggage will usually be smaller in capacity than a soft-sided suitcase even if their volume is the same. This is because when you pack a soft shell suitcase, it can expand a little, accommodating more of your clothes.

A four-wheel spinner also has a little smaller capacity than a two-wheel suitcase, but their overall size is usually a bit bigger. That's because the size of the suitcase is measured from the ground and includes the wheels. On two-wheel suitcases, the wheels are usually recessed while the four-wheel spinners have their wheels out fully.

And finally, please remember when you buy suitcases online to check the weight of the suitcase. Ideally, you want a lightweight suitcase especially if you are buying a large or extra-large one. These are going to be difficult to carry when full so best to look for the lightest ones.

Carry On Luggage

Small cabin suitcase (carry on)

A small cabin suitcase usually measures 48 cm or 18 inches in height. The capacity is up to 40 litres.
You can use a small cabin bag on pretty much all airlines. This is your luggage which you are allowed to take with you onboard during your flight, at no extra cost.

Carry ons used to be perfect to use on European budget airlines such as Wizzair and EasyJet but since 2018, only priority passengers are allowed to carry a bag on board. Purses and very small bags are still allowed.

American low-cost airlines like Southwest Airlines and JetBlue still permits small cabin bags alongside your handbag.

Please note, most budget airlines are now limiting the size of the carry-on luggage or do not allow them at all without additional payment. Always check your airline baggage policy before you travel.

Why buy this? The smallest of the suitcase sizes, the tiny cabin bag is perfect for business travellers who only need their laptop and a few essentials with them. Carry ons are also great for travellers who have a large checked-in luggage and don't want to carry anything else but their papers, electronics and valuables on board.

Why not buy?Cabin suitcases are not recommended on their own for long trips due to their small size and lack of space.

Large Cabin Suitcase

The large cabin suitcase usually measures 55 cm or 20 inches in height and has a capacity of up to 45 litres. Large cabin bags are perfect for short-haul flights, trips which last only a few days.

If you are looking for standard-sized cabin luggage, this is your best option.

They are also ideal for budget travellers, travelling on low-cost flights, who purchased checked-in luggage or priority boarding. Most airlines accept 55 cm (20 inches) cabin suitcases. (See table below for individual airlines carry-on allowances.)

Why buy this? Large cabin suitcases are perfect for business travellers staying a few days at their destination. The large cabin suitcase with four wheels is also perfect for short-haul flights. If packed well, you can fit enough items to keep you going for up to 5 days abroad.

Why not buy? Large cabin suitcases are pretty good. I can't think of anything negative about them. You might want to consider buying a smaller one if you travel short-haul for only 2-3 days. You will likely need a Medium Suitcase for holidays longer than 1 week.

Extra-large Cabin Suitcase

The size of an extra-large cabin suitcase is around 56 cm or 22 inches in height with a capacity of up to 50 litres. This is more spacious than the standard large cabin suitcase adding an extra 5 litres in capacity. We often take an extra-large cabin suitcase with us even if it isn't full so we have extra free space for souvenirs and other things we buy during our trip.

However, most airlines accept suitcases which have maximum dimensions of 55 cm (20 inches), so you might find yourself in a situation where you actually have to pay to check in this type of luggage. The best thing to do is to check with the airline when you book the ticket.

Why buy this? If you are a frequent flyer with a specific airline carrier who allows you to take on board a cabin bag with these dimensions. This size is also a great option to check-in for long-haul flights, alongside your carry-on bag.

Why not buy? You might have issues with the size and weight of these suitcases. Consider the distance from the airport to your accommodation. If you have to walk or take public transport a lot, maybe get a smaller suitcase or consider purchasing a spinner suitcase set.

Medium Size Suitcase

A medium suitcase measures 68 cm or 24 inches in height and has a capacity of up to 75 litres. This is a fantastic option to check-in on short-haul flights alongside your carry-on.

Medium Size Suitcases are also great for short multi-city stops as it's relatively lightweight and small enough to be practical to carry around with you. It usually fits comfortably into a taxi and it's not too much hassle to carry it on public transport.

Why buy this? If you want to check-in your luggage, but need a small enough luggage for you to freely move around during your travels. Check out the four-wheel, spinner suitcases for additional convenience. These are easy to roll around and won't fall over all the time.

Why not buy? We can't find any fault with this size. Consider how much stuff you need and if you think it will fit, go for it. Medium Size Suitcases are usually large enough to fit clothes for about 7 days.

Large Size Suitcase

Out of all the suitcase sizes out there, large suitcases are perhaps the most popular for travellers wishing to check-in their luggage.

The large suitcase measures 74 cm or 27 inches in height and has a capacity of up to 117 litres. These suitcases are versatile, spacious and allow you to have a series of outfits with you.

The large size gives you the freedom to pack whatever you need for your travels which last longer than 1 week.

Why buy this? The large suitcase is ideal for long trips especially if you need to pack for more than one traveller. We recommend you to buy the large, four-wheel spinner version as they will be easier to roll around.

Why not buy? This size can be too big for some. Check the amount of stuff you want to take with you and based on the length of your stay ask yourself. Do I really need this size?

Pro Tip: Always check the checked baggage weight allowance for your flight. These suitcases are easy to fill up, as they are so big, and they might become too heavy. A good rule of thumb: Aim for no more than 20kg (44 lb) weight.

Extra-large suitcase

This suitcase measures 85 cm or 32 inches in height and has a capacity of up to 130 litres. This is ideal for long stays or expats moving abroad.

We usually travel with 2 extra-large suitcases when we do long-term travel, longer than 2 weeks that is. We also used these suitcases when we moved abroad, travelled to Japan and New Zealand. Probably one of the best investment to date.

Remember, if you fill up this suitcase to the rim, it might be too heavy for you to carry. As always we recommend buying the four-wheel version which is much easier to roll around. Also, consider booking a taxi between the airport and your hotel so you don't have to carry this suitcase on public transport.

Why buy this? Perfect if you stay long-term in one destination as you can carry all your belongings in it. This is an excellent choice for families travelling with children as well.

Why not buy? This is a very large suitcase and it can get a little inconvenient to carry around. Important to note that this is a very large suitcase and many airlines have weight limits, usually maximum 35kg for each luggage, for checked-in bags. Always check with your airline to ensure your luggage is not overweight.

Suitcase Sets

If you are travelling frequently, it might be a good idea to purchase a suitcase set. Suitcase sets are usually more budget-friendly as you get more suitcases for your money than if you buy them separately.

To make your life easier, I collected the most common suitcase sets for you to pick from.

2 Piece Suitcase Set

Included: 1 small and 1 large suitcase

2 piece suitcase sets are good for 1 or 2 people. You can take the smaller luggage for short-haul flights, the larger one for a week-long holiday and both for a long-haul trip. Alternatively, pack your clothes into these suitcases for a week-long holiday for two.

3 Piece Suitcase Set

Included: 1 carry-on, 1 medium and 1 large suitcase

3 piece suitcase sets are a bit more common and they are really good value for money. Usually, you get a smaller carry-on, a medium-size bag and a large suitcase. Whether you go for the softshell version or the hardshell type, always aim to buy the four-wheel spinners as they are easier to carry during your travels.

These sets are great for couples or small families with children.

Carry on For Travellers

Which suitcase suits your style of travel?

I created a useful list of traveller types and what suitcases I recommend and why.

With so many suitcase sizes available on the market it is important to first check the airline's luggage policy and baggage weight allowance. Also, check your ticket, it usually shows what bags you can take on board, check-in and what are the weight limits.

Carry-ons for Business Travellers

If you are a business traveller going on very short trips, then a small or medium-sized cabin suitcase will be perfect for you.

You should also consider an elegant backpack which will fit your electronics, especially if you don't need to carry clothes with you.

If you have to have clothes with you, check if packing cubes might be a good fit for you. They allow you to organise your clothes and when packed well, prevent unwanted creases.

Suitcases for Digital Nomads

Depending on how often you change locations, a medium or large checked luggage and a smaller carry-on suitcase or backpack should be enough.

Make sure to put your laptop, electronics and batteries into your carry-on. It is never recommended to put valuables into checked-in luggage. Did you take out travel insurance?

As a digital nomad, you should travel light. If you move a lot, you will soon become an expert in packing and unpacking. Packing cubes can help you keep your stuff well organised and easy to access.

If you are on a budget, consider buying a medium/large backpack. It is super convenient and easier to get around with it.

Luggage for Professional Travellers & Travel Bloggers

Depending on the length of your trip I recommend you to purchase a medium or large checked bag and take a smaller carry-on with you for your papers and electronics.

Remember, never put valuables into checked-in luggage and always have insurance for your gear before travelling.

For short trips, we always take a small spinner suitcase and our Thule bag with us. The spinner can usually fit into the overhead lockers alongside the electronics bag. However, if we can only carry one bag on board, we simply check-in the spinner. No worries.

Budget Travellers

If you are a budget traveller who doesn't want to pay for checked-in luggage, a large cabin suitcase will be perfect for you. Make sure you check with the airline that your suitcase size fits the allowed carry-on sizes and weight allowance.

Remember, that nowadays some airlines ask you to check in your luggage if you didn't purchase priority boarding.

It's always a good idea to keep a small handbag or a carry-on backpack with you which fits under the seat so you can quickly remove valuables from your larger luggage.

For City Breaks & Couple Travellers

If you are going away for a quick city break or doing a multi-city hop for a few days (we are jealous) a medium suitcase should be enough. You can check it in or (in most cases) carry it on board.

A medium suitcase will usually fit clothes and accessories for two people for 2-4 days.

Need more space for gadgets and clothes? Pick a size larger suitcase and relax. You should always go for the four-wheel versions as they are much easier to roll around.

Pro Tip: See if packing cubes can be a good fit for you. They are great to organize your clothes, inexpensive and will make your life much easier.

Holidaymakers

Travelling for 1-2 weeks? I would recommend one medium-sized suitcase per person (unless you are going to the beach or to a very hot destination which case you really don't need much space).

If this is your first time purchasing suitcases, consider buying a suitcase set so you get better value for your money.

For your convenience, check-in all your luggage and keep just a small bag with you for your papers and valuables. This small bag should fit under the seat in front of you.

Long-term Travels & Couples

The medium or large suitcase is for long-term travellers or couples who want to minimise the checked-in costs. When you travel with someone, both of you have a carry-on bag to take on board and a checked bag each so you have a lot of space to play with.

It's always better to travel light but we understand that you need a lot of stuff when you travel long term. Remember to always check the size and weight allowances with your airline before you travel.

The extra-large suitcases are perfect for long-term travellers who spend a lot of time in one destination or for expats moving countries. Airlines normally allow you to purchase additional checked bags if needed.

Families Travelling with children

We recommend the medium or large suitcase sizes for families with children. Purchase the four-wheel version so you can carry your suitcases around much easier.

Consider investing in a suitcase set so you get better value for your money.

Don't forget to plan ahead. Make sure to pack everything you need onboard into a separate carry-on. Are you travelling long-haul? Consider taking food, water, medicine, toys for the kids, personal hygiene items with you.

Check with the airline to ensure, your carry-on is within the allowed size and weight limits.

It is a good idea to organise an airport shuttle to and from your hotel. This way, you will have to worry less about your luggage and enjoy more of your stay. Did you take out travel insurance?

Travel Bag For Women and Travel Bag For Men

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Guide to Suitcase & Luggage Sizes [Updated for 2021]

Guide to Suitcase & Luggage Sizes [Updated for 2021]

Compare Carry-on Suitcase Sizes & Volumes

Ever wondered how much stuff you can actually fit in one of these carry-ons?

In this handy table, I have collected the measurements and volume of each airline-approved carry-on suitcase. Use the "Size Type" Column to find the airline list below.

Size Type Suitcase sizes (cm) Suitcase sizes (inches) Capacity (litre) Suitcase sizes (us oz)
Size A 55 x 35 x 25 cm 21.6 X 13.8 X 9.8 inches 48 l 1627 oz
Size B 55 x 40 x 20 cm 21.6 X 15.7 X 7.9 inches 44 l 1488 oz
Size C 55 x 40 x 23 cm 21.6 X 15.7 X 9 inches 50.5 l 1711 oz
Size D 56 x 36 x 23 cm 22 X 14 X 9 inches 46.3 l 1568 oz
Size E 56 x 45 x 25 cm 22 X 17.7 X 10 inches 63 l 2130 oz
Size F Various other sizes - - -

Carry-on Suitcase Sizes for Various Airlines

Airline companies around the world have different requirements in terms of size and weight of your carry on luggage.

In the tables below, we have collected most major airlines and grouped them by their maximum allowed carry on size. For each airline, we added the allowed carry-on weight in kilogram and pounds.

Size A - 55 x 35 x 25cm (21.6 x 13.8 x 9.8 inches)

Airlines listed below allow carry-ons no larger than 55 x 35 x 25cm or 21.6 x 13.8 x 9.8 inches on board.

Airline Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Aerolineas Argentinas 10 22.05
Air Europa 10 22.05 1 bag
Air France 12 26.46 1 bag & 1 handbag
Alitalia 8 17.64 1 bag
Algerie Airlines 10 22.05 1 bag
Arik Air (Nigeria) 12 26.46 1 bag
Avianca 10 22.05 1 bag
Hop! 12 26.46
Jet Airways 7 15.43
KLM 12 26.46
Mauritius Airlines 7 15.43 1 bag & 1 handbag
Tam 8 17.64
Xl Airways 5 11.02

Size B - 55 x 40 x 20cm (21.6 x 15.7 x 7.9 inches)

Airlines listed below allow carry-ons no larger than 55 x 40 x 20cm or 21.6 x 15.7 x 7.9 inches on board.

Airline Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Aeroflot 10 22.05 1 bag
Air Armenia 7 15.43 1 bag
Air Caraïbes (Air Caraibes) 12 26.46
Air China 8 17.64 1 bag
Air India 8 17.64
Air New Zealand 7 15.43 1 bag & 1 handbag
Air Seychelles 7 15.43 1 bag
Arkia 7 15.43
Asiana Airlines 10 22.05 1 bag
Belavia Airlines 8 17.64 1 bag
Condor Flugdienst 6 13.23
Corsair International 12 26.46
Germania 6 13.23
Korean Air 12 26.46
TAP Air Portugal 8 17.64
Thomas Cook 6 13.23
Thomson 5 11.02
TUI Fly Deutschland 6 13.23
Vueling 12 26.46

Size C - 55 x 40 x 23cm (21.6 x 15.7 x 9 inches)

Airlines listed below allow carry-ons no larger than 55 x 40 x 23cm or 21.6 x 15.7 x 9 inches on board.

Airline Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Air Canada 10 22.05 1 bag & 1 handbag
Airberlin 8 17.64
Air Baltic 8 17.64 1 bag & 1 handbag
Austrian Airlines 8 17.64 1 bag
Azerbaijan Airlines 10 22.05 1 bag
Bangladesh Airlines 7 15.43 1 bag
Blue Air 10 22.05 1 bag & 1 handbag
Bmi (British Midland Airways) 12 26.46
Brussels Airlines 12 26.46
Ethiopian Airlines 7 15.43
Eurowings 8 17.64
Flyniki 8 17.64
LOT Polish Airlines 8 17.64
Lufthansa 8 17.64
Norwegian Air Shuttle 10 22.05
Olympic Airlines 8 17.64
Scandinavian Airlines 8 17.64
Swiss International Air Lines 8 17.64
Turkish Airlines 8 17.64

Size D - 56 x 36 x 23cm (22 x 14 x 9 inches)

Airlines listed below allow carry-ons no larger than 56 x 36 x 23cm or 22 x 14 x 9 inches on board.

Airline Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Aeromexico 10 22.05
Alaska Airways - - 1 bag & 1 handbag
AirAsia Airlines 7 15.43 1 bag & 1 handbag
American Airlines - - 1 bag & 1 handbag
American Eagle - - 1 bag & 1 handbag
Bangkok Airways 5 11.02 1 bag
Cathay Pacific 7 15.43
China Airlines 7 15.43
Qantas 7 15.43
South African Airways 8 17.64
Vietnam Airlines 7 15.43
Virgin Atlantic 10 22.05

Size E - 56 x 45 x 25cm (22 x 17.7 x 10 inches)

Airlines listed below allow carry-ons no larger than 56 x 45 x 25cm or 22 x 17.7 x 10 inches on board.

Airline Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Air Astana 8 17.64 1 bag & 1 handbag
Air Nostrum 8 17.64 1 bag
Aegean Airlines 8 17.64 1 bag
Atlasjet Airlines 8 17.64 1 bag
British Airways 23 50.71
Easyjet No Limit No Limit
El Al (Israel Airlines) 8 17.64
Finnair 8 17.64
Iberia Airline 10 22.05
Jet2 10 22.05
Thai Airways 7 15.43

Size F - Various other sizes

Each airline listed below has a different carry-ons policy. If you can't find your airline, please let us know in the comments section below and we will try and help.

Airline Size (cm) Size (inches) Weight (kg) Weight (pounds) Cabin Bag Allowed
Aer Lingus 55 x 40 x 24cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.5 inches 10 22.05 1 bag
Air Transat 51 x 40 x 23cm 20 x 15.7 x 9 inches 10 22.05 1 bag & 1 handbag
ANA - All Nippon Airways 55 x 40 x 25cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05 1 bag
AeroMexico Airlines 55 x 40 x 25cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05 2 bags
Aurigny Air 55 x 36 x 20cm 21.6 x 14 x 7.8 inches 10 22.05 2 bags
Cebu Pacific 56 x 35 x 23cm 22 x 13.7 x 9 inches 7 15.43
Czech Airlines 55 x 45 x 25cm 21.6 x 17.7 x 9.8 inches 8 17.64
Delta Airlines 56 x 35 x 23cm 22 x 13.7 x 9 inches Check with airline Check with airline
Emirates 55 x 38 x 20cm 21.6 x 15 x 7.8 inches 7 15.43
Etihad Airways 50 x 40 x 21cm 19.7 x 15.7 x 8.3 inches 7 15.43
Flybe 55 x 35 x 20cm 21.6 x 13.7 x 7.8 inches 10 22.05
Israir Airlines 50 x 40 x 20cm 19.7 x 15.7 x 7.8 inches 8 17.64
Japan Airlines 55 x 40 x 25cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05
LATAM Airlines (LAN Airlines) 45 x 35 x 20cm 17.7 x 13.7 x 7.8 inches 8 17.64
Malaysia Airlines 55 x 36 x 25cm 21.6 x 14 x 9.8 inches 7 15.43
Malta Airlines 55 x 40 x 25cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05 1 bag & 1 handbag
Monarch 56 x 40 x 25cm 22 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05
Philippine Airlines 115cm 45 inches 7 15.43
Qatar Airways 50 x 37 x 25cm 19.7 x 14.6 x 9.8 inches 7 15.43
Ryanair (Priority only) 35 x 20 x 20cm 13.7 x 7.8 x 7.8 inches Check with airline Check with airline
Singapore Airlines 115cm 45 inches 7 15.43
Transavia 55 x 40 x 25cm 21.6 x 15.7 x 9.8 inches 10 22.05
Tunis Airmax 115cm 45 inches 8 17.64
United Airlines 56 x 35 x 22cm 22 x 13.7 x 8.6 inches Check with airline Check with airline
Wizz Air 42 x 32 x 25cm 16.5 x 12.6 x 9.8 inches Check with airline Check with airline

Compare Checked-in Suitcase Sizes

Most airlines allow a checked-in suitcase to weight between 20kg (44 pounds) to 25kg (55 pounds) but the checked-in baggage allowance varies so much that it is almost impossible to collect them all.

The absolute maximum weight of any check-in bag is 35kg for health & safety reasons. Any bag weighing more than 35 kg will be refused by the airline.

Your baggage allowance will depend on the airline, the length of your flight (short or long-haul), and sometimes the policy of the airport where you depart from.

Always check with the airline before you travel and allow yourself enough time to pack your bags before you leave.

In the below table, we have collected the different sizes, capacity and recommended travel times for each checked suitcase size.

Suitcase Size (height) Capacity (litre) Recommended Travel Time
20'' Small Suitcase 38 l 1-4 days
24'' Medium Suitcase 60 l 4-7 days
28'' Large Suitcase 90 l 7-9 days
30'' Extra Large Suitcase 120 l 9-14 days

The below image shows the sizes of different suitcases.

Compare Suitcase Sizes - Image credit Amazon

What is the largest suitcase you can check-in on a plane?

The usual weight limit for the largest suitcase you can check-in is 30kg (66 pounds) per checked bag.

The absolute maximum weight of any check-in bag is 35kg (77 pounds) for health & safety reasons. Any bag weighing more than 35 kg will be refused by the airline.

Size restrictions may also apply: the largest suitcase dimensions you can check on a plane is 81 x 59 x 34 cm (31 x 23 x 14 inches).

Remember, depending on your ticket class, you might have additional allowances, like extra bags, extra-large bags, etc. Please make sure to check with your airline before you travel.

How much does extra baggage cost?

If you are taking extra carry-on luggage with you on board or check an extra suitcase on the plane, you might have to pay an 'excess baggage fee'.

The excess baggage charge can significantly vary between airlines. Excess carry on fees are normally lower than excess checked-in luggage. Also, keep an eye on potential extra fees. For example, if your extra luggage is also oversized (it's larger than the permitted checked-in luggage size) you might need to pay additional charges on top of the excess baggage fee.

It's best to check with the airline prior to your travel.

Tips & Trick we learnt during our travels

Always go for the four-wheel suitcases

Suitcases are normally inconvenient to carry around. Always purchase the four-wheel version of larger suitcases. These are easier to roll and you don't have to lift them up.

Keep an eye on the quality. If the suitcase is bad quality, you risk the wheels to be broken by the time you arrive at your destination. Check the reviews and try to go for the suitcase with the most indented wheels.

Less is more

We found that it's sometimes better to carry one large suitcase with us instead of two or three smaller ones. However, always make sure not to overfill your suitcase and check the weight before you travel.

Also, make sure you are comfortable pulling and lifting the suitcase yourself.

Carry your valuables with you at all times

Unfortunately, it can happen that things disappear from your checked baggage. We recommend that you never put valuables into the bags you check-in. Keep a small bag with you and put all your papers, electronics and valuables in there.

Hardshell vs soft case

We found that during long-haul we prefer a good, sturdy, hardshell suitcase. The hard shell will protect your items in the suitcase and won't tear or damage during handling.

Soft cases are lighter normally and easier to carry when you go for a short trip. Wrap fragile items with clothes so they survive the trip.

Travelling with batteries & drones

Regulations on bringing batteries on board (in a carry-on or checked baggage) varies country to country and airport to airport. Find the European regulations here, USA regulations here.

Most airlines and airports require you to carry the batteries with you on board in your carry-on. The batteries will be checked during security.

Some airports (we are looking at you Budapest Airport) might not allow you to carry drones on board in your carry-on. You will have to take any batteries out of the drone and place them in your carry-on separately.

Always check the regulations before you leave for both your origin and destination countries. If you transfer to a new flight, make sure to check the policy of the transfer airport & country too.

Your drone and batteries can be confiscated if you don't comply with regulations.

Did we forget anything?

We always try to improve the information here. If you notice any mistakes or outdated information please let us know in the comment section below.

Do you have any tips? Share it in the comments below and we will add it to the article.

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Comment

J
Jessica Hart
02 Jul 2019

Wow! This is an extremely useful article. I have always been confused about what kind of suitcase/ bag to carry for what purpose.

M
Mariana
08 Jun 2019

Thanks for the info. I want to know if 20 kg fit in a 65 x 42 x 25 cm suitcase.

C
Cory
12 Jun 2019

It normally depends on the litre capacity. We have a similar suitcase and we can fit 20kg without issues.

C
Craig Holtz
31 May 2019

It’s not the size that is the issue for carry one with El Al airlines. It’s the weight restriction of 8 kg (17.6 lbs.) I’m having a difficult time getting all of my camera gear to be within the weight requirement

L
Lizzie Morris
24 Feb 2019

Hi,you have a great website, very useful when planning trips, however!! I am planning a safari and beach holiday which includes main flight with Emirates but internal light aircraft flights with a maximum weight allowance of 15kg. I can't leave a large suitcase anywhere safe, so help please, what do you recommend? I will be taking a small rucksack as hand luggage.
Many thanks

C
Cory
24 Feb 2019

Hi Lizzie,

Thank you for your message. Unless you can leave the large suitcase safe anywhere, we recommend travelling with your 15kg only.

You can check to see if you can pay extra to bring the large suitcase on the internal flight? Sometimes, for a fee, they allow it. If not, check online to see if the airport offers any storage facilities. That usually helps. Alternatively, if you plan on staying in a hotel prior to your "light flight", maybe check with them to see if they can store your luggage for a period of time.

I hope this helps.

Kind Regards,

Cory

B
Beverly Kelly
13 Dec 2018

Hi, thanks for the tips. The only other things to mention is that suitcases with 4 wheels should never be rolled on just 2 wheels. Very susceptible to breaking the wheels.
And, clamshell bags don’t fit very well on hotel suitcase stands. Nor are they as convenient because they take up twice the space when opened and can be difficult to move without having to close them completely.

P
Patricia
18 Oct 2018

Hi
I have a question!
I am moving from England to Spain via Malaga on Easyjet. I can book 3 suitcases up to 32k each. I need to buy these suitcases but don't know the dimensions of each suitcase( I think total is 275cm)?? Silly question?? HELP!!

C
Cory
22 Oct 2018

Hi Patricia,

I think you can go for a large or extra large suitcase. We used extra large and it was fine!

Kind Regards,

Cory

L
Lola
18 Sep 2018

Hi. so this is my first time traveling overseas and I need your opinion, what kind of luggage should I get for 5days and 4night holiday. We will go on Autumns and will move to 3 city.

a
a thomas
03 Sep 2018

Absolute great info.Do you detailed check in luggage sizes too?
That would be of great help

C
Cory
07 Sep 2018

Thank you for your message. We just updated the content to contain more info.

Kind Regards,

Cory

T
Tariq
14 Jun 2018

Hi firsty this was a great read and secondly just a quick question I am moving to england and I am told I can take 23kg checked lagguage and 7kg carry on so 30kg in total. So for the checked baggage what size would you reccomend as a lot of the suitcases that i am looking at have a capacity in litres not in kg which is a bit confusing?
Thanks

C
Cory
20 Jun 2018

Hi Tariq,

We bought the Samsonite Valise Termo Young as recommended in the extra large suitcases. We make sure we fit bulky items (like winter clothing) but don't go over 23 kg when we measure it. If you have smaller items, you can also go for a "large" suitcase. The capacity is there to guide on how many bulky items you can fit. Also, if you travel by car, an extra large suitcase is more suitable as you don't have to worry about the kg but gain a lot of inner space for your items. I hope this helps.

Kind Regards,

Cory

R
Rhona Belle Escaño
24 Mar 2018

Hi. Is 20kg.luggage suits in 24 inches suit case?thanks

C
Cory
26 Mar 2018

Hi Rhona,

Yes it does. Of course, it depends on what type of things you need to bring with you. For example, a medium size full of liquids will easily be over 20 kg. With clothes and some liquids, you should have no issues at all.

J
Johny Jackson
09 Jan 2018

Great info. Lucky me I came across your website by accident (stumbleupon).
I've book-marked it for later!

J
Johny Jackson
14 Jan 2018

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before. So good to discover somebody with some genuine thoughts on this topic.

Really.. many thanks for starting this up. This site is something that's needed on the web,
someone with some originality!