As airlines introduced fees for baggage over the past few years, more and more regular travellers have wised up and maximised their cabin luggage allowance with generously sized carry-ons and eliminated the need to wait on bags in the arrivals. Now with airlines having more and more people maximising the allowance, the IATA (the international airline association) has recommended a smaller cabin bag, and many airlines have advised they will be going with the smaller proposed bag size allowance.
Here is how to make sure you don't get stung at the airport with excess baggage fees or needing to check-in a bag full of stuff you planned to use on the flight.
Check if your airline is complying
While many of the full service airlines are planning on following the IATA guidelines, several of the lower cost airlines have not committed to follow the guidelines yet. If you regularly travel for business, you'll probably have one or two airlines that service much of your flying.
Check if your loyalty status entitles you to more luggage
For many business travellers, the high loyalty program statuses come with additional benefits, which could include more leniency with the amount of hand luggage you carry.
Rationalise your packing
Before you go out to buy a new bag, it's important to take a serious look at what you are bring in the bag and see if it's all required. If you are consistently lugging around athletic shoes but never get a chance to exercise, or have consistently been bringing a formal dress but only ever head to dinner in business attire this can be a good chance to rationalise what you pack and open the door for a small bag.
Shop for a new bag
If you've crunched the numbers and it seems time to get a new bag, head online to see how you can best maximise your packing. The height has remained similar for most airlines, with a slightly smaller width and depth. It can be worth purchasing an adjustable (double zipped) depth so that it can also be checked if you end up having to bring extra things home and decide to check your luggage. Buying luggage online from a company like Sweeney Luggage Centre can be a great way to easily compare bags from different stores to maximise storage volumes.
Have a great trip, and make the most of the time you save not waiting at the baggage carousel for checked luggage.