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22 inch backpack and 21.65 inch max height -- will it be allowed?

Just ordered a backpack and am having second thoughts. I'm guessing that because it's a backpack and not a suitcase, if it isn't packed to the brim we will be able to smoosh it down to fit....but I'm not 100% positive. No issues with either the width or the depth. What do you think??

Posted by
7190 posts

The fullness of a flight is one factor that draws more attention to carry on bag rules. Hopefully you are not travelling in the summer.
Wear it on your back when boarding. They may not see it and ask you to fit it in the container to measure it. My backpack is about the same as yours in length ; but it is the thickness at the bottom of it (since mine has wheels) that has caused me trouble; but I have not been forced to check a bag at the gate yet.

Posted by
8618 posts

You talking about US domestic travel or a a budget European airline that charges for every extra possible?

Your odds may vary with different airlines. A half inch or less is hard to eyeball, so avoid looking like you are 'struggling' to carry it.

Posted by
515 posts

No wheels to add to the length. We're traveling on an European airline but not a budget airline. There are size and weight restrictions for the carry ons and we'll be sure to be under the weight restriction. I would think that a backpack without a solid frame could fit into the bin so long as it isn't fully packed?

Posted by
5784 posts

21.65 inches? You must be looking at a 55 cm limit. If you backpack is soft, 22 inches would squeeze into a 55 cm box if it isn't over packed to a point of bulging.

Rollers tend to be more of a problem for two reasons. First, rollers generally are ridgid from bottom of wheels to top of the pull handle. Second, some rollers specify the usable height with wheels/handles projecting beyond making the out-to-out height non compliant.

The working rule is that if you can fit the backpack into the sizing frame at the boarding desk, you should be able to fit the backpack into the overhead compartment.

Posted by
6869 posts

I went from a 22 inch rolling bags to a 21 inch ultra lightweight carry on bag--TravelPro.
Last time I was flying home from Oslo, the airline decided to make an example out of me. My bag is exactly 21 inches but the swivel wheels out me slightly over 21.65 inches. Cost me $50 x 2 for the bag to be checked. We got on the plane and almost everyone in the plane had larger bags than we had in the bins. I just love inconsistency.

Posted by
8618 posts

David--- were the other 'larger' bags 2 or 4 wheels?

Wonder if your 4 wheel bag gave the illusion of being a lot larger than it is, in comparison to a 2 wheel bag where the wheels are tucked away?

May be a new factor to consider when picking between 2 or 4 wheel bags, especially where the dimensions are borderline to the airline specs.