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How do you weigh your suitcase before leaving for the airport?

Organizing your luggage before you fly can be a real headache. You need to arrange your outfits neatly without creasing them, and add your shoes without crushing them. You also need to find a place for your toiletries and small accessories such as cables and chargers. But before you leave for the airport, there's another detail not to be overlooked. Your luggage must be rigorously closed and respect certain size criteria. Nor should it weigh more than the authorized limits. What are these limits? How do you estimate the weight of a suitcase? Find out in this article.
Published on February 7, 2024

Why is the weight of your suitcase so important?

Air transport regulations are very strict when it comes to on-board baggage. Numerous conditions apply to items that may or may not be carried in the cabin or checked baggage. Moreover, airlines may decide to go further than the basic rules.

The same applies to the size and weight of suitcases. In fact, each carrier sets its own thresholds according to the capacity of its aircraft and the configuration on board. To ensure passenger comfort, baggage may be moved from the cabin to the hold if it does not fit under the seat or in the dedicated compartment.

Depending on your flight and the ticket you have booked, a certain number of baggage items may be included free of charge. Don't forget to check this information before validating your booking. However, it is still possible to add this option several hours before departure.

If baggage is included in the price of your ticket, it must still comply with the rules laid down by the airline. If the weight of your suitcase exceeds the authorized limit, you'll have to pay an additional fee before boarding, or unload some of your belongings on the spot.

How do you weigh your baggage before flying?

There's no question of weighing your luggage empty and adding up the weight of each item inside. That would be far too tedious and time-consuming.

Weighing your suitcase with a bathroom scale

You probably have a mechanical or electronic scale in your home. It's a simple, practical solution that gives you a good estimate. However, avoid placing your luggage on it, as the weighing platform is not wide enough.

Here's how it works:

  • Step on the scales without the suitcase and weigh yourself
  • Go downstairs and take your luggage in hand while you wait for the scale to return to zero.
  • Get back on the scale and read the number while carrying your suitcase.
  • Subtract to obtain the weight of your luggage

Weighing your suitcase with a luggage scale

A luggage scale is a small, practical and inexpensive accessory. It's ideal if you often travel by plane. All you have to do is attach this little tool to a handle and lift it up. After a short moment, the figures appear on the luggage scale's display screen.

The advantage of this type of measuring instrument is that you can take it with you to weigh your suitcase before returning home, if you plan to come back with souvenirs of your stay.

Based on the same principle, there are also suitcases with built-in scales on the handle. An option to consider if you need to buy new luggage.

Is the weight allowed in the hold and in the cabin the same?

As a general rule, baggage can weigh more in the hold than in the cabin.

Hand luggage

Cabin suitcases on all our routes must not exceed the defined size of 115 cm (divided into a height of 45 cm, a length of 45 cm and a depth of 25 cm). This limit is accompanied by a maximum authorized weight of 10 kg. Other carriers may have different thresholds, varying on average from 6 to 12 kg.

Checked luggage

Baggage allowed in the hold can be larger. It can hold up to 23 kilos for an adult or child ticket. The maximum size accepted is 158 cm, divided into height, width and depth. Any excess weight will be billed, up to a maximum of 32 kg.

Good to know: musical instruments, sports equipment and other oversized baggage may be subject to special treatment. Please contact the airline for further information before your flight.