2019 British Airways Baggage Allowance and Fees

2019 British Airways Baggage Allowance and Fees

With more airlines pushing cheaper fares in lieu of “perks” like free bags, it’s more important than ever to check your baggage allowance and fees before flying. Fortunately for us, British Airways offers a generous amount of weight for passengers traveling in all fare classes. Whether you’re a musician, athlete, parent, disabled person or pet owner, your special baggage needs can be accommodated. Keep reading to learn more about rates, allowances, restrictions and every other important bit of luggage-related information.

The Basics

Hand baggage

 2019 British Airways Baggage Allowance and Fees

Every ticketed passenger is allowed 2 bags onboard:

  • 1 small bag (ex: handbag) up to 23kg and 40 x 30 x 15cm in size
  • 1 larger bag (ex: suitcase) up to 23kg and 56 x 45 x 25cm in size

 

This ends up being a total weight of up to 46kg per passenger. However, the weight allowance can’t be split across multiple bags.

 

*Warning* Anything purchased in duty free at the airport will be counted towards your hand baggage allowance. Excess bags will be checked at the gate.

Checked baggage

 2019 British Airways Baggage Allowance and Fees 2

Your fare type will determine your checked baggage allowance on British Airways flights. All checked bags can be a maximum of 90 x 75 x 43cm in size.

 

Basic

Hand baggage only

*checking bags will cost extra

Economy

*Euro Traveller, World Traveller

1 bag (up to 23 kg)

*see destination specific requirements below for more information

Premium economy

*World Traveller Plus

2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Business

*Club Europe, Club World, Club World London City

2 bags (up to 32kg per bag)

First

3 bags (up to 32kg per bag)

 

When flying in different classes for a connecting journey, the longest part of your trip will determine your baggage allowance.

Executive Club and Oneworld members

Gold (oneworld) and emerald tier members can take an additional checked bag and silver (oneworld) and sapphire tier members can take 2 bags (up to 32kg per bag) for any fare type expect basic. This applies to everyone in the booking.

Destination specific requirements

Some arrival, departure or connecting destinations have different baggage allowances than the standard British Airways rate.

Economy fares

Flights between London and Doha: 1 bag (up to 32kg)

Flights between Europe and Japan: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Flights between South Africa and Victoria Falls/Zambia/Zimbabwe/Windhoek/Mauritius: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag) 

Flights to/from Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Connecting between Islamabad or India and USA/Bermuda/Canada: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Journeys originating in/returning to Saudia Arabia from USA/Bermuda/Canada: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Journeys originating in/returning to Kuwait: 2 bags (up to 23kg per bag)

Flights within South Africa: 1 bag (up to 23kg)

Business class fares

Flights within South Africa: 2 bags (up to 32kg per bag)

Flights between South Africa and Victoria Falls/Zambia/Zimbabwe/Windhoek/Mauritius: 2 bags (up to 32kg per flight)

Extra baggage fees

You can check up to 10 extra bags per person for a fee. These fees are subject to change and can only be viewed during or after booking. You can check online under “Manage My Booking”.

 

Typical prices range from $25 to $80USD per bag. The price per bag will decrease the more you purchase. On the other hand, the price will be higher if you wait to purchase at the airport.

Overweight baggage fees

 2019 British Airways Baggage Allowance and Fees 3

Special Baggage Rules

Pets

Unfortunately, pets are not allowed to travel with you in the cabin unless they are medically approved service animals. You also can’t check live animals in as baggage.

 

Pets are only allowed as air cargo and will be placed in the hold. This is an important consideration for pet owners who have animals that may not be able to withstand the temperatures and stress of transport in these types of conditions.

 

If you’d like to bring your pet with you, you’ll need to go through one of British Airways’ approved agents: IAG Cargo or PetAir UK. They will help you to navigate the ticketing process and transport of your pet to and from the hold for a fee.

 

You can transport dogs, cats, birds, hamsters, monkeys, ferrets, snakes and tropical fish.

Crates

Your pet must be placed in a properly sized crate. The crate must be IATA compliant and meet the basic requirements for comfort:

  • Large enough for your pet to stand, turn around and lie down
  • Made of durable materials
  • Have a secure, spring-loaded lock system
  • Ventilation on 2 sides for domestic flights and 4 sides for international flights
  • Have your animal’s identification, health certificates and your contact information placed on the outside

Children

Traveling with your family doesn’t need to be a headache. Infants and children are allowed extra accommodations with British Airways to make your trip easier.

Hand luggage

You’re allowed to bring 1 cabin bag for infants under 2 years old for free. The bag can be up to 23kg and 56 x 45 x 25cm in size. Children above 2 years old are allowed the same cabin allowance as adults. In addition, you can bring your car seat on board if you’ve booked a ticket for your child.

 

*Warning* This does not apply if you’re traveling on a hand baggage only fare.

Checked luggage

Infants under 2 years old are allowed 1 checked bag, while children from 2-11 years old are allowed the same checked baggage allowance as adults.

 

In addition, you can take up to two baby items for free as checked baggage for children up to 11 years old. These include strollers, car seats, travel cots and baby back carriers.

Strollers

Most strollers can be taken into the departure lounge and collected right at the gate. Staff will keep your stroller in the hold until arrival. Pushchairs that fold into a bag can be taken on board as part of your hand luggage allowance.

Food

You are allowed enough baby milk, food, formula or sterilized water as required for your trip. They don’t need to meet the normal liquid restrictions, nor do they need to be held in a transparent bag.

Sport equipment

Sport equipment will be included in your checked baggage allowance. Equipment must meet the weight restrictions but can be up to 190 x 75 x 65cm in dimension. Any equipment that is heavier than your allowance will incur a heavy bag charge.

Musical equipment

Small musical instruments (up to 80 x 45 x 25cm) can be carried as part of your hand luggage. If your instrument is larger (up to 140 x 50 x 40cm), you can pay for an extra seat to bring it on board or check it as part of your baggage allowance.

 

*Warning* Guitars must be packed in a rigid case and checked in to the hold. They are not allowed in the cabin unless an extra seat is purchased.

E-cigarettes and vapes

You are only allowed to bring e-cigarettes or vapes in hand luggage. They are not able to be carried in your checked luggage. It’s best to disconnect the battery from the vaporizer to prevent any accidental overheating during travel.

Batteries

Most portable electronic devices that use lithium batteries can be carried in both hand and checked luggage. This includes laptops, tablets, cameras, smart phones, portable chargers and more. However, you’ll need to receive special permission for devices that 100-160Wh batteries (for example, powerful laptops). Anything above 160Wh is strictly forbidden and won’t be able to board the plane with you.

 

*Warning* Recently, there have been several high-profile electronic device recalls. Any device that has been recalled due to battery issues won’t be allowed on the plane. This includes the recent recall of 2015 15-inch MacBook Pros.

Restricted items

If you’re concerned about whether you’re allowed to pack a certain item, it’s best to check first before arriving at the airport. Surprisingly, there are several common household products that are forbidden and may cause unnecessary delays in your journey if you’re caught bringing them aboard.

Hand luggage

Item

Is it allowed?

Aerosols

Yes

*must be under 1kg in total weight

Alcoholic beverages (below 24% alc. content)

Yes

Alcoholic beverages (24-70% alc. content)

Yes

*must be purchased at airport and not exceed 5 litres

Alcoholic beverages (above 70% alc. content)

No

Batteries (under 100Wh)

Yes

Batteries (100-160Wh)

Yes
*must be pre-approved

Batteries (over 160Wh)

No

Blunt objects (ie. baseball bats or weapons)

No

Corrosive and toxic substances (including bleach)

No

E-cigarettes and vapes

Yes

Explosives and flammable substances

No

Firearms

No

Food

Yes

Fuel cells

Yes

Heating tools

No

Hoverboards and e-bikes

No

Liquids (under 100ml)

Yes

*must fit in a 1l transparent bag

Liquids (over 100ml)

No

Pepper spray or animal repellant

No

Sharp objects

No

Smart bags

Yes

*must have a removable battery under 100Wh

Workman tools

No

 

Checked luggage

Item

Is it allowed?

Aerosols

Yes

*must be under 1kg in total weight

Alcoholic beverages (below 24% alc. content)

Yes

Alcoholic beverages (24-70% alc. content)

Yes

*must not exceed 5l

Alcoholic beverages (above 70% alc. content)

No

Batteries (under 100Wh)

Yes

Batteries (100-160Wh)

Yes
*must be pre-approved

Batteries (over 160Wh)

No

Blunt objects (ie. baseball bats or weapons)

Yes

Corrosive and toxic substances (including bleach)

No

E-cigarettes and vapes

No

Explosives and flammable substances

No

Firearms

No

Food

Yes

Fuel cells

No

Heating tools

Yes

Hoverboards and e-bikes

No

Liquids (under 100ml)

Yes

Liquids (over 100ml)

Yes

Pepper spray or animal repellant

No

Sharp objects

Yes

Smart bags

Yes

*must have a removable battery under 100Wh

Workman tools

Yes

Traveling with disabilities

Assistance dogs

Certified physical assistance dogs can be brought into the cabin for free. They must have the proper paperwork (including proof of vaccinations) and be wearing an identifying jacket or harness. Otherwise, they will be classified as a pet. Dogs will also need a safety harness to secure them during take-off and landing.

 

If you’d like to travel with your assistance dog, you cannot book your ticket online; you will have to contact British Airways directly. If you have already booked a flight, you must contact British Airways at least 14 days in advance of your trip to notify them of your changed status.

 

For those traveling to the UK, you must have a pre-approval letter from the Animal Reception Centre. If you do not have this documentation, you and your dog will not be allowed to board the flight.

 

*Warning* Certified emotional support dogs will only be accepted in the cabin if your flight is a direct trip to/from the US. If your trip is to/from another destination, your dog will be transported in the hold. 

Medical equipment and supplies

If you are traveling with medical equipment, like a CPAP machine, you will not be charged any overweight fees as there are no weight limits.

 

You are allowed an extra 2 bags (23kg each) of essential medical supplies for checked luggage. These must be accompanied by an official medical letter that includes your information.

Mobility aids

British Airways allows for an unlimited number of personal-use mobility aids to be brought onboard for free. These include items such as walking frames, ramps and wheelchairs.

 

You can choose to either use your mobility aid until you reach the departure gate, or give it to the attendants when you check in. Some collapsible manual wheelchairs can be stored in the cabin depending on the amount of space available. Others will be put in the cargo hold until you arrive at your destination. For travelers with connections, attendants can arrange to have the mobility aid delivered to the aircraft door for use in the airport.

 

Mobility aids and wheelchairs must meet the specific dimension requirements and not be over 250kg in weight. If your mobility aid is larger, heavier or uses a battery, contact British Airways to discuss your options.

 

Type of flight

Maximum dimensions (cm)

Long haul aircraft

140 x 85 x 152

Short haul aircraft

140 x 85 x 106

CityFlyer

74 x 94 x 73

FAQ

1.  How do I pay for extra baggage?

You can purchase extra bags during your booking process. You can also buy more online or at the airport once you’ve booked your trip. The rate will be set at the date of ticket purchase and will be determined by your trip type.

2.  What will happen if my bag is overweight at the airport?

For oversized or overweight hand luggage, your bags will be checked and counted towards your checked baggage allowance. If you’re above your allowance, you’ll be charged a fee.

 

For checked baggage, you’ll be charged an overweight fee of $100USD per bag. Bags above 32kg are not allowed.

 

Before flying, make sure to evenly distribute your stuff so you’re not caught paying at the airport. Your baggage allowance is based on a per-bag-basis and cannot be divided amongst multiple bags, unlike some other airlines.

3.  Can I combine luggage weight with my travel partners if we check in together?

Unfortunately, fliers can’t split their “total” weight allowance between different bags or travel party. The weight allowance applies to each individual bag, regardless of the combined weight. If you are planning on traveling with multiple bags, be sure to divide the weight evenly amongst them to avoid any unwanted fees.

4.  What are the allowances if I fly with a different airline operated by British Airways?

Your baggage allowance is determined by the airline code for your flights. You can find your flight codes in the letters listed before your flight numbers. For example, BA123 or AA123.

 

  • All flights are listed with the BA code: British Airways’ baggage policy applies
    • Exceptions:
      • Comair flights use BA codes but have specific baggage allowances for southern Africa. Please refer to the “destination specific requirements” above for more information.
      • SUN-AIR flights use BA codes but only allow 1 checked bag (90 x 75 x 43cm) up to 23kg in weight.
    • All flights are listed without the BA code: The assigned airline’s baggage policy applies
    • Mix of BA and other airline codes: The airline operating the longest part of the journey baggage policy applies

 

5.  What can I do if I’m not allowed to take my electronic device onboard?

For passengers departing from London Heathrow airport, you can leave your device with the staff and choose to either:

  1. Collect it when you return
  2. Have it mailed to your address for free using a MailandFly-Service

If you’re departing from another airport, you’ll need to contact the customer service team to check what your available options are.

Happy flying with British Airways

Before packing your bags and heading to the airport, make sure you’re up to date on this years’ 2019 baggage policy for British Airways. Keep in mind that changes can be made at any time, so if you have questions, it’s best to call an airline representative to confirm.

 

Pro tip: Finding the right luggage and packing smartly can make your trip a lot less stressful. Keep your favorite airlines’ requirements in mind while purchasing your bags so you can avoid any unwanted fees.


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