Australian airlines have united together to stop passengers from getting away with sneaking oversized baggage on aircraft cabins.
From tomorrow, all domestic passengers will have their cabin bag weighed before boarding.
The strict ban will see passengers who have a bag weighing more than 7kg be forced to pay for it to be stowed in the cargo hold with other checked luggage.
Virgin Australian is the latest airline to join the strict weight enforcement, with Qantas announcing the baggage crackdown last week.
Budget airlines Tigerair Australia and Jetstar already use scales to make sure passengers don’t bring oversized luggage as carry-on.
To make sure the carry-on baggage rule is in full effect, both Virgin and Qantas will increase their resources at airport terminals from next Monday.
Virgin Australia said it was joining the ban as oversized carry-on luggage was causing injuries to passengers and cabin crew and holding up flights as passengers struggled to find enough space in the cramped overhead compartments.
“As an industry, we’re seeing many passengers trying to bring everything but the kitchen sink on domestic flights, which is causing flight delays as well as safety issues for cabin crew, ground crew and passengers,” Virgin Australia general manager of ground operations Paul Woosnam told news.com.au.
“This is preventable if all passengers adhered to the baggage limits and guidelines, and from the customers we’ve spoken to, we know they’re in favour of our renewed focus on cabin baggage.”
Mr Woosnam said “more and more” flights were being delayed due to the preventable problem.
“Christmas is an incredibly busy time of year for us so we do encourage anyone travelling over the holiday period and beyond to familiarise themselves with the carry-on allowances to help get them to their destination safely and on time,” he said.
Virgin Australia offers domestic passengers 7kg of carry-on baggage.
Passengers can also bring a laptop bag, handbag or suit bag in addition to the 7kg.
Qantas passengers can board with a maximum of two carry-on baggage pieces that must be under 7kg.
A Qantas spokesman told news.com.au: “Qantas offers the most generous amount of cabin baggage of any Australian airline and we know customers like the convenience of not having to check in luggage. But we’re getting feedback from regular flyers who say all customers need to be reminded about how much luggage they can take on-board.
“So, we’re renewing our focus to keep cabin baggage within the allowances and to ensure everyone has their fair share of space on-board.
“Ensuring that allowances are being followed will also help reduce delays during the boarding process and ensure an on-time departure.
Jetstar and Tigerair passengers can “top up” their carry-on baggage by paying an extra allowance.
The strict crackdown has been supported by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
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Article created in partnership with Over60.