Passengers on domestic flights will have their cabin bags checked to comply with the 7-kg rule
Airline carriers of Australia have united and decided to enforce their cabin baggage policies in a new measure. Starting this week, the airlines will weigh each passenger’s cabin bag at various stages of their journey through the airport.
The new rule aims to ensure that handbags comply with the 7-kg rule, as well as to avoid injuries related to overweight luggage.
Passengers on domestic flights with luggage over 7 kg will have to place it in the cargo hold as checked bags.
“Many passengers try to bring everything but the kitchen sink on domestic flights”
The new measure, which is supported by Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority, was announced by both major legacy carriers, Virgin Atlantic and Qantas. Low-cost airlines Tigerair Australia and Jetstar have already been using scales to crack down on overweight bags.
“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,” said Virgin Australia’s general manager of ground operations Paul Woosnam.
“We’re seeing injuries to our cabin crew caused by closing overhead lockers full of heavy baggage, shifting bags in overhead lockers to assist guests finding space and assisting passengers with lifting their bags into the overhead compartments.
“Some of these injuries can be quite significant and may result in the crew member being unable to work for a period of time.”
Virgin Australia’s baggage policy allows passengers to take up to 30 kg overall, which includes a 23-kg checked bag, plus 7 kg of carry-on baggage. The carrier also allows boarding with laptop bags, handbags or suit bags in addition to the 7-kg limit.
Qantas allows passengers to take two handbags. Neither of these can exceed the 7-kg limit.
“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,” a Qantas spokesperson told news.com.au.
Both Virgin Australia and Qantas will start weighing bags this week. However, the launch of their final crackdown is scheduled for Monday 17 December.