Light? no. Small? no. A Carry On? No!


Selas Rivers, Contributer

Recent airlines such as Delta, Southwest, and American Airlines have started to accept passengers who want to bring on large items of their care. Among these, a passenger could bring on a cello, a skateboard, and possibly (if they wanted) a bike. The airlines are starting to do this to motivate passengers to not be discouraged to travel because of the strict fees that they would have to pay for their oversized items. For example, American Airlines use to charge passengers about $150 for oversized luggage, such as for bikes, surfboards, and/or cellos. Instead, American Airlines will only charge passengers the regular fee of $30 as long as their item is under 50 pounds.

The problem with this is that the oversized item that they would bring on to the plane could cause problems for other passengers. Jay Sorensen, president of an airplane revenue consultancy company, stated: “I’m very surprised by it because these pieces, like a bike or a surfboard, while they don’t weigh much, they are a hassle to handle, so typically what you do is you assign a higher cost to that because they’re nonstandard,” (Source 1). In allowing people with different “standards” aboard the plane with oversized luggage gives those passengers less stress and more security. American Airlines wants to become more friendly in being less discriminatory toward people with large luggage.

When standing in line to wait to get your tickets and check in your bags, often times people look around to see if the person in front of them have a lot to check in. If the person before you has,maybe, one or two carry-on sized bags, then you put in your mind that, ‘Oh, this won’t take as long as I thought, I have enough time to go grab something to eat.’ But if the person before you has an oversized item, then it gets passengers discouraged to wait in line just to check in their bags. It makes you think, ‘Oh, I should have come here earlier than 30 mins before my flight, I still need to get through security before I get to my gate number… Haha…’

Another issue with this idea is that people have different views on what is considered ‘oversized’ and what is not. Again, Mr. Sorensen states, “If it’s seen as an unfair price, it just leads to fights at the ticket counter, and arguments, and that is not something that’s helpful for anyone,” (Source 1). Imagine again if you were the person with the oversized luggage. You walk up to the counter and they say that your oversized item doesn’t qualify for the $30 price, but, rather than the $150 one. It would cause you to be enraged and want to talk to their manager and demand a better price since they have now dropped the price on oversized luggage. This in, the end, would cause a backup in lines and frustration between the check-in agents.

“It would be inconsiderate of another passenger to bring a bike on the plane and place it right next to me and expect me to be okay with it. I am already frustrated about not having enough room in the aircraft because of how the commercial aircraft manufacturers have placed the seating in the plane to be so tight,” (Chandler Ellerbusch). Chandler’s input on, ‘if she were to have a passenger next to her bring their bike onto the plane and put it right next to her, how would she feel?’  It’s not like the plane has enough room for both a bike and a person. Would rather a bike sit next to you or a person? I’m the same way as Chandler.


Chandler Ellerbusch