Airlines are continuing to crack down on the size of your carry-on. The goal for our trip is to carry on everything. I have always heard there are two types of luggage “lost” or carry-on”. With only a few items on our trip we don’t want to risk losing them, or wasting time waiting for a lost bag. With all of our past trips we have always managed with a carry on, but they have never been 9+ months in length. After much deliberation and finally narrowing it down to a Deuter 42L and an Osprey 36L, our decision was to purchase the Osprey Stratos 36. We like the pockets, size and the air flow design of this bag. We will let you know later on how it works out!
See below for various airline carry-on requirements:
|Airline||Allowance||Max weight / piece||Max size / piece|
|Air Tran||1 plus 1 personal item||–||55″|
|Alaska||1 plus 1 personal item||–||10″H x 17″W x 24″L|
|American||1 plus 1 personal item||40lbs||45″|
|Continental||1 plus 1 personal item||40lbs||51″|
|Delta||1 plus 1 personal item||40lbs||All items must each fit in atemplate approx 22″ x 14″ x 9″|
|Frontier||1 plus 1 personal item||35lbs||49″|
|Hawaiian||1 plus 1 personal item||25lbs||45″ or 22″ x 14″ x 9″|
|Horizon||1 plus 1 personal item||10″H x 17″W x 24″L|
|JetBlue||1 plus 1 personal item||–||–|
|Southwest||1 plus 1 personal item||–||24″ x 16″ x 10″|
|Spirit||1 piece, no personal items||40lbs||22″ x 13″ x 10″|
|United||1 plus 1 personal item||–||22″ x 14″ x 9″|
|US Airways||1 plus 1 personal item||40lbs total||24″ x 16″ x 10″ for overhead21″ x 16″ x 8″ for under seat|
Requirements above via SkyRoll
A 40L+ pack is a gamble, so we hope for the majority of flights, a 36L will fit, fully realizing that we may have to check it a few times. The airline could look past it thinking, “It’s just a backpack,” or if it’s packed full they could potentially make us check it.
Our carry-on philosophy comes from a strong desire to travel light. The smaller the bag the less we can fit, which will force us to be deliberate in what we pack. It is still early in our planning process and we have plenty of time to determine what we want to bring. One of our biggest concerns with the smaller pack is ensuring our laptops, DSLR camera and other electronics all fit. Once we get all of our gear together we can better determine what stays and what goes.
Scott n Emily says
Now that it’s after the fact, how many times did you need to check your bag on your trip? I just bought and Osprey Stratos 36 and I’m trying to figure out if I’m going to be able to avoid checking it as often as I hope.
Caroline Eaton says
We only checked it maybe once or twice on small airplanes throughout the entire year. Whenever we were checking it in, we always knew the attendant would question the size/weight – but we would do our best to keep it hidden behind us, take the hip straps off while we checked in and pretend the backpack was light as a feather 🙂 Good Luck its a great bag!
And to that I would ask about a Exos 38L. Would you always carry on? I’ve flown before with no carry on and its quite nice (save the risk of losing a checked bag)
Took a trip to Peru and was able to carry on for all the flights, but it wasn’t packed very full. Considering a Trip to SE Asia, and am wondering.