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RS bag size compared to Airline restrictions

Several airline carryon restrictions seem to be slightly larger than the RS bag dimensions. For example, multiple airlines (Condor, Ryanair, Lufthansa, Norwegian Airlines) have similar restrictions listed in centimeters as 55 x 40 x 20. This translates into 21x15x7.8 inches. The RS bags are 21x14x9. The 21 & 14 inches are fine, however, the 9 inch width of the bag exceeds the 7.8 inches allowed. We do see that many folks are using these bags as carryon, but we would like to make sure that the RS bags can be used as carry ons for the airlines mentioned. I'm assuming if the bag is not overstuffed that we would be OK. Is that reasonable? Any feedback on that? Thanks so much!

Posted by
681 posts

Lufthansa has a carry-on restriction by weight. Our RS bags would fit in the overhead just fine, but they are usually too heavy. I suppose if the bag is slightly over the weight restriction, they may not know you exceed the weight. But we play it safe on Lufthansa and check our bag.

Posted by
8245 posts

We use TravelPro 21 inch swivel wheeled ultralight carryon bags.
You are okay carrying on American legacy airlines. But you may catch a gate agent on a European carrier having a bad day that is looking for someone to make an example. Their rack on the floor is 21.6 inches long and wheels on the suitcase keep it from passing the rack test. Penalty is paying $50 for the bag to go in the belly of the plane.
You still have a better chance losing the scale game, as 22.2 lbs (10 kg) is often passed. I have had to off load some of my laundry into my wife's bag to avoid a penalty.

Posted by
14291 posts

You'll not want to put anything in the front pockets at all if you are trying to get it to be that skinny. I would also have a luggage strap you can use to cinch it down. There is hard plastic on the end where the wheels are that measures about about 7.5 inches. You'd have to underpack so the top of the suitcase was depressed to that level to make the 7.8 inches.

You might do better to just pay when you book to have your bags checked?

I noticed recently at TJMaxx there were 2 different cases there that were in the 17-18 inch range. If you go shopping for one, take a tape measure with you because I never believe the measurements that are listed!

Posted by
2788 posts

I have booked a flight on Delta from SEA to Paris to Rome to Sicily and back and see on my paperwork that one checked bag is free all the way which includes local airlines from Rome to Sicily and back to Rome. I will be contacting Delta to verify this. I have gone to Europe for 14 of the last 16 years, taking 14 RS tours (soon to be #15 & #16) and only one time have I ever encountered a hangup there. That was one time when a local airline weighed my check-in bag and said it was too heavy so I removed some printed material and added it to my carry-on with no problems. I have always used one of RS 21/22" roller bags.

Posted by
19171 posts

I've flown multiple times on Lufthansa with my ca. 2000 Rick Steves convertible bag. As long as it is not packed to bulging, it will pass.