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Travel Tip: Carry-On Luggage Restrictions Are Shrinking

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lipaultSeveral of the major carriers have quietly changed carry-on luggage restrictions, which could impact you the next time you’re at the airport.

This information isn’t exactly widespread and enforcement can be arbitrary.

So you could be stopped at the gate for having an oversized bag…even if you’ve brought it on with no problems before.

This isn’t a new trend: Way back in 2008, Continental and US Airways shrunk their carry-on luggage size by 6 inches.

Both airlines allowed carry-0n bags of 51 linear inches—that’s the total length plus width plus height.

Now, Continental only allows bags that are 45 linear inches.

The newly merged American Airlines and US Airways have the same policy, except with soft sided garment bags, which can be be 51 linear inches.

Back in March, I reported on United Airlines—which merged with Continental—shrinking its bag allowance.

Plus, they’re cracking down by putting baggage sizers in airport lobbies and gate areas.

The good news, if you can call it that, is some airlines like JetBlue and Southwest are still sticking with larger allowances.

But, you better get out that measuring tape before you head to the airport.

For more information, visit the Luggage & Packing archives.

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