United Airlines Baggage Policy

airfleetrating-Baggage Policy
United Airlines Baggage Policy

Before traveling with United Airlines, knowing its baggage allowance and guidelines is important to avoid any hassle/delay at the airport. The baggage policy of United Airlines provides some rules, regulations, and limitations that vary for different baggage types you need to follow and know in advance. This policy also specifies some special and restricted items, hence, if you are planning to fly with United Airlines, you are at the right place. In this article, you will understand the baggage guidelines for both domestic and international flights with United Airlines.

What is the United Airlines Baggage Policy?

The United Airlines baggage policy outlines specific guidelines for carry-on and checked luggage. The policy includes size and weight restrictions, allowances based on travel class, and excess baggage fees. The baggage allowance for each travel class may vary. Additionally, it also specifies the rules regarding the prohibited items. 

Moreover, the United Airlines excess baggage regulations and applied charges are also defined under this policy. However, special items and sports equipment may be subject to specific handling rules and charges.

Guidelines and Rules

Here are some of the essential baggage rules of United Airlines that you must know and follow:

  • To comply with United Airlines’ checked baggage rules, if you are traveling with baggage, you need to check in 45 minutes before the domestic flight and 60 minutes before the international flight.
  • You can carry excess luggage with United Airlines only to a certain limit, so you must adhere to the airline’s weight and size restrictions.
  • If you plan to travel with pets, you must obtain permission from the United Airlines authorities beforehand.
  • United Airlines does not accept multiple bags that are tied or strapped together as a single checked item. Each bag must be checked in separately according to the airline’s policy.
  • In the pet policy of United Airlines, certain size limits for pet kennels are mentioned. Thus, to carry your pet as carry-on luggage the dimensions of a kennel should not exceed 17.5x12x9 inches(L*W*H) for hard-sided carriers and 18x11x11 inches ((L*W*H) for soft-sided carriers.
  • You may have to pay United baggage fees of USD 125 for carrying your pets with United Airlines.

Restrictions and Limitations

  • As per the United Airlines Baggage Policy, there are specific rules to follow regarding your luggage. Your bag must not have any protrusions, sharp points, or removable straps that could cause damage. It should be fully enclosed with durable material to withstand transit handling.
  • You must not carry certain dangerous items on the flight, as there are strict prohibitions against transporting hazardous materials given by United. Some of these items are mentioned below:
    • Firearms
    • Lighters
    • Batteries
    • Dry ice
    • Gun Powder
    • Gels and chemicals
    • Matchsticks
    • Gasoline-powered tools
    • Liquid Nitrogen
    • Dry Snipers

NOTE: You must be aware of the United Airlines check-in policy to understand the various timelines. It will help you check in your luggage on time.

United Airlines Baggage Allowance

United Airlines Baggage Allowance

You are allowed to bring three types of baggage under the United Airlines baggage policy, i.e. checked, carry-on, and excess luggage. For each type of baggage, United Airlines applies some rules & regulations, like size, weight, and restrictions on some items, which are discussed below.

Checked Bags

As per the United Airlines checked baggage rules, you are allowed to bring a checked bag that should not exceed size – 30x20x12 inches (76x52x30 cm). Please note that this size limit includes wheels and handles.

  • The United Airlines weight limits as per travel cabin are as follows:
ClassAllowed Weight
Polaris Business Class70 lbs or 32 kg
First Class50 lbs or 23 kg
Premium Economy 50 lbs or 23 kg
United Basic Economy50 lbs or 23 kg
  • If you are a member of the MileagePlus program, then you must know the following weight limits as given in the United Airlines baggage policy:
MileagePlus StatusWeight Limit (per bag)
Premier Silver, Gold, Platinum, and 1K70 lbs or 32 kg
Star Alliance Gold (In Business)50 lbs or 23 kg
Star Alliance Gold (In Economy)50 lbs or 23 kg
  • Things you are allowed to carry under checked bags when flying with United Airlines are mentioned below:
    • Clothes
    • Processed food
    • Toiletry items
    • Safety kit
  • The allowed sports equipment that you can carry as United Airlines checked luggage includes the following:
    • Windsurfing equipment 
    • Tennis items 
    • Wave ski
    • Surfboards and paddleboards 
    • Skating Equipment 
    • Scuba Diving items 
    • Pool Cues 
    • Parachutes 
    • Lifejackets 
    • Kiteboards 
    • Javelins 
    • Hockey Equipment 

NOTE: If any of these items exceed the weight limitations, you will be obliged to pay extra baggage fees as per the checked baggage policy of United Airlines.

Carry-On Luggage

According to the United Airlines carry-on baggage guidelines, you can bring a carry-on bag to a United Airlines flight but it must be under the size of 9x14x22 inches (23x35x56 cm). You must know that this size includes the wheels and handle. 

  • As per the policy, the carry-on bag should fit inside the overhead bin available above your seat on the United Airlines plane.
  • If you are flying in the basic economy with United Airlines, you can only carry a personal item as carry-on luggage. 
  • You are not allowed to bring carry-on bags unless you are traveling to South America, across the Atlantic, or the Pacific. 
  • You will have to pay a carry-on baggage fee of $25 to United if you want to carry a full-size carry-on bag on your flight with United Airlines.
  • United Airlines allows you to bring electronic items such as cameras, calculators, recorders, electronic games, chargers, laptops, and trimmers in your carry-on luggage. 
  • You are allowed to bring the basic items under carry-on luggage when traveling with United Airlines, like handbags, strollers, water bottles, diapers, etc.
  • Apart from carry-on bags, United Airlines allows you to carry personal items with dimensions 22x25x43 cm or 9x10x17 inches. This bag should fit in the given space under the seat, whether it is a laptop bag, handbag burse, or shoulder bag.
  • Some of the fragile items that United Airlines allows you to carry under this category are musical instruments (such as, Flutes, Drums, and Violins), Expensive Art, Precious stones, Jewelry, Silverware, Costly watches, Religious Items, etc.
  • As per the baggage policy of United Airlines, you can carry liquids and powders in carry-on baggage but adhere to the following restrictions:
    • All liquids must be less than 3.5 ounces or 100 millimeters. 
    • They must be carried in a clear, sealable bag. 
    • The bag should be about quart-size or liter-size. 
    • You can carry up to 350 ml powder in your carry-on bag if you are flying within the USA.

NOTE: If you are carrying a smart bag that has lithium batteries, then you have to remove them before boarding your flight with United.

United Airlines Baggage Rules for Military Persons and Dependents

United Airlines Military Baggage Rules

United Airlines extends its gratitude to active U.S. military personnel and their dependents by offering specialized baggage allowances on flights operated by United and United Express.

  • Dependents of active U.S. military personnel are entitled to the same benefits if they are traveling on the same reservation.
  • In cases where travel is initiated due to military orders, dependents have the option to travel alone. However, United Airlines will standard baggage allowances and fees when the dependent travels without proof of military orders.
  • The baggage policy of United Airlines ensures that both active military members and their dependents have sufficient allowance for their belongings, making their travel stress-free and accommodating to their needs.

Baggage Allowance For Military Personnel

Type of TripNumber of BagsSize (per bag)Weight (per bag)
Personal Travel362 inches (158 cm)70 lbs (32 kg)
Military Dependent with Travel Orders262 inches (158 cm)70 lbs (32 kg)
Military Orders562 inches (158 cm)100 lbs (32 kg)

United Airlines Baggage Claim (Damaged, Delayed, or Lost Luggage)

During your journey with United Airlines, if your luggage is lost, delayed, damaged, or if items are missing, you need to immediately report the issue. You can claim at United’s Baggage Service Office at the airport, online, or via phone to receive a file reference number.

To claim your damaged, delayed, or lost baggage with United Airlines, follow the given steps:

  • Visit United Airlines’ official website.
  • First click on “Travel Info” then select “Baggage Info”.
  • On this page, click on “Issues with your bags”
  • Here, scroll to the bottom and select the category to request reimbursement.
  • Fill in the necessary details as requested by the airline and make your baggage claim.

NOTE: In the U.S. (including Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands), report within 24 hours. Outside the U.S., report damaged bags within 7 days and lost or delayed bags and missing items within 21 days.

How much is the United Airlines Baggage Fees?

When flying with United Airlines, you should be aware of the airline’s baggage policy, which includes various fees depending on factors like ticket class and routes.

  • For domestic flights with United Airlines, baggage fees start from $35 for the first checked bag and increase up to $150 for additional bags.
  • For international flights with United Airlines, you will charged a fee that begins from $60 for the first bag (Basic Economy) and $100 for the second bag.
  • However, for certain routes, United Airlines may permit you to have two checked bags for free, while premier members might check two bags without additional charges.

NOTE: United Airlines may incur additional fees for oversized and overweight bags, with charges ranging from $200 for oversized bags to $400 for overweight bags.


To wrap up, understanding the baggage policy of United Airlines is essential to avoid any inconvenience during your journey. You must follow the guidelines on specific baggage size and weight, restricted items, and arrive early at the airport to check in with baggage on United Airlines. Make sure to place medication, and other essential items, like your wallet and keys in your carry-on bags. Additionally, to keep your bags safe, you can place your contact or email on the tag or in the front pocket of your bag, so United Airlines can easily contact you if your bag is lost. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does United charge for checked bags?

United Airlines charges $35 for your first checked bag and $45 for the second bag on domestic flights if you’re flying in economy. Charges for international flights may vary from $60 to $100 as per the travel class.

What is United’s baggage allowance for international flights?

For international flights with United, you typically get one or two free checked bags if you’re flying in economy, depending on your destination. Premium economy, business class, or first-class tickets usually include 2 to 3 free checked bags.

Does United charge for a carry-on?

No, United Airlines does not charge for carry-on bags for most ticket types. However, if you’re flying on Basic Economy, you will need to pay $25 for a full-size carry-on bag, except on certain international routes where a carry-on is included at no extra cost.

Is there a weight limit for carry-on bags on United?

United Airlines does not enforce a specific weight limit for carry-on bags. However, your carry-on must fit in the overhead bin and adhere to the size dimensions of 9x14x22 inches, including handles and wheels.

How much luggage is allowed on United Economy Plus?

In United Economy Plus, the luggage allowance is the same as for standard Economy passengers, which typically includes one carry-on bag and one personal item for free. Checked baggage fees are applied unless your ticket or status allows for free checked bags.

Can I bring a carry-on with United Basic Economy?

Yes, you can bring one personal item for free with United Basic Economy. For a full-size carry-on bag, a $25 fee applies unless you’re traveling to South America, across the Atlantic, or the Pacific where a carry-on is included.

What is the damaged baggage policy for United Airlines?

If your bag is damaged, not due to the bag’s quality or overpacking, you should report it and file a claim for potential reimbursement. For damage during security screenings, you’ll need to contact the TSA.

What is United Airlines’ baggage policy for carry-ons?

For carry-ons, United Airlines allows you to bring one bag plus one personal item free of charge, provided the carry-on fits in the overhead bin and adheres to the dimensions of 9x14x22 inches, including handles and wheels.

What is United Airlines’ checked baggage policy?

Under United Airlines’ checked baggage policy, your bag should not exceed 62 linear inches (length + width + height) and must adhere to weight limits, which vary by class (e.g., 50 lbs for Economy, 70 lbs for Polaris Business, and Premier members).

What is United Airlines’ international baggage policy?

United Airlines’ international baggage policy generally allows economy passengers to check one or two bags for free, depending on the destination. Premium cabin tickets often include two free checked bags.

How many carry-on bags are allowed on United?

United Airlines permits one carry-on bag and one personal item for most passengers, excluding Basic Economy travelers, who are only allowed one personal item unless their route includes a carry-on.

What is the standard carry-on size for United Airlines?

The standard carry-on size for United Airlines is 9x14x22 inches, including handles and wheels, suitable for storage in the overhead bin or under the seat in front of you.

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  • Aiden says:

    I had an amazing trip with United Airlines this time. As I had packed my bags without any notice, I had to buy some more bags by paying United Airlines extra baggage fees. Upon purchasing, the flight boarding was smooth with no troubles all my way to Seattle. Thanks for giving us these policies.

  • Logan says:

    I found United Airlines Baggage costs to be fair. As I read your policy, it mentioned that the costs are different for every route type. But I am a usual traveler of this airline and I have had no issues while paying the costs to buy more luggage. Thanks for providing good info on the web.

  • Carter says:

    When I was going to book my tickets with United Airlines, I had no idea about its baggage policy. Then quickly I went to Google and typed up United Airlines checked bag size to know how many dimensions I can carry with me. Then after seeing this policy I got to know that it should not exceed 62 linear inches. Thankyou for the quick help.

  • Lucas says:

    United Airlines Baggage costs for Business Class were the most costly. I did not understand why they charged so much on carrying overweight items inside the flight. But when I inquired with the air carrier about it, it said that the airline baggage allowance says so and that’s when I checked this policy. I guess it should narrow down its prices.

  • Ethan says:

    I think in my opinion United Airlines checked bag size is appropriate for every traveler. The airline mentions that maximum passengers can carry 158 centimetres of luggage which is fine for me. And I am satisfied with the rules of the policy. Thanks for giving me last-minute info on this air carrier and reducing my extra costs while flying.

  • Debbie says:

    Is Economy Class different than Basic Economy with how many carryon bags, such as 1 carryon and 1 personal. Wanting to know for Economy class.