American Airlines Baggage Allowance

Check in Baggage Allowance

In general, American Airlines charges fees for even the first check-in baggage. However, there are certain exceptions to this rule which allow passengers to take even up to 3 check-in bags free of cost.

Let us first know what these charges are. Thereafter, we will mention exceptions.

All Flights except to/from Asia

Region Bag 1 Bag 2 Bag 3 Bag 4+
Domestic $25 $35 $150 $200
Mexico $25 $40 $150 $200
Caribbean $25 $40/$55** $150 $200
Central America $0/$25** $40/$55** $150 $200
Brazil $0 $0 $85 $85
South America $0/$25** $0/$40/$55** $150 $200
Transatlantic (Europe) $0 $100 $200 $200
Transpacific (China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia) $0 $0 $200 $200

**1st and 2nd bag fees apply for travel to Cali, Colombia and El Salvador.

**2nd bag charge applies to San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa, Port au Prince and Haiti, from June 20 – August 9, 2017 and December 8 – 24, 2017.

Flights to/from Asia

Region Bag 1 Bag 2 Bag 3 Bag 4+
Mexico / Caribbean / Central America/ South America $0 $0 $200 $200
Brazil $0 $0 $85 $85
Transpacific (China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia) $0 $0 $200 $200



Free 1st Check in bag:

  • AAdvantage® Gold
  • oneworld® Ruby
  • Alaska Airlines MVP members^
  • Confirmed Premium Economy customers*

Free 1st and 2nd Check in bag:

  • AAdvantage® Platinum Pro
  • AAdvantage® Platinum
  • oneworld® Sapphire members
  • Alaska Airlines MVP Gold^
  • Confirmed Business Class customers*

Free 1st, 2nd, 3rd Check in bag:

  • Confirmed First Class customers on 3-cabin aircraft
  • AAdvantage® Executive Platinum
  • oneworld® Emerald
  • Alaska Airlines MVP Gold 75K^
  • Active U.S. military and/or dependents with ID traveling on orders (1st – 5th bags free of charge)
  • Active U.S. military with ID on personal travel

The Special Case of Cuba Flights

Flights To Cuba

From US/Puerto Rico/Mexico/US Virgin Islands/Canada/Caribbean to Cuba, 1st check in baggage is charged $25

For round trips from these countries to Cuba, 1st baggage charge is $25 and 2nd baggage charge is $40. From Cuba back to the origin destination in these countries, there is no charge on first or second check in baggage.

Flights From Cuba

One-way trips from Cuba to US/Puerto Rico/Mexico/US Virgin Islands/Canada/Caribbean allow you to take first and second check in bags free of cost.

Round trips from Cuba to these countries allow free 1st and 2nd bags from Cuba but from these countries to Cuba, the 1st bag is free whereas the 2nd baggage costs $40.

Maximum number, weight and size of check-in bags

You can take 10 check-in bags at a time when travelling on domestic flights of US, Transatlantic and Transpacific flights.

However, if you are travelling to/from Central America/Mexico/Caribbean, South America or Brazil, you can bring 5 check in bags at maximum.

Each check-in bag shall not weigh more than 23 kgs (32 kg for Brazil, First and Business Class travel) and shall not be more than 158 cm in sum of dimensions.

Oversized Baggage Charges

No check in bag shall be more than 320 cm in sum of dimensions as it will not be accepted by AA. And, there is a fee for taking bag of size more than 158 cm in sum of dimensions. This fee depends on route of flight of AA. This is given below:

Flights to/from Asia are charged $200

Flights to/from Other Regions

Region Larger than 62 in / 158 cm
Between U.S., Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and Canada $200
Mexico / Caribbean / Central and South America* $200
Brazil* $150
Europe (transatlantic) $150
China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia (transpacific) $200


Overweight Baggage Charges

American Airlines does not accept bags more than 45 kg in weight.

American Airlines flights to/from Asia are charged $100 for weight between 23kg-32kg and $450 for weight more than 32 kg and up to 45 kg.

AA flights to/from other regions are charged the following fee:

Region 23 kgs-32 kgs 32 kgs – 45 kgs
Between U.S., Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and Canada $100 $200
Mexico / Caribbean / Central and South America $100 $200
Brazil* $0 $200
Europe (transatlantic) $100 Not accepted
China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia (transpacific) $100 $450 (Not accepted to/from Australia)

For cities such as Recife, Brasilia and Salvador, check in bags shall not be more than 32 kg in weight and over 158 cm in size.

Carry On Baggage Allowance

American Airlines allows you to take 1 carry-on bag and 1 personal item on-board. Passengers travelling on Basic Economy cabin class are allowed only 1 personal item.

The personal item shall fit in the space below front seat and shall not be more than 45 x 35 x 20 cm in size.

The carry-on bag shall not exceed 56 x 36 x 23 centimeter in size. It is important to adhere to these dimensions since these will be checked at the airport in a sizer.

Certain items which you have to take as hand baggage, such as diaper bag, child seats, strollers, medical devices or mobility devices are neither considered as personal item or carry-on item.

Special Baggage

American Airlines (AA) allows carriage of special baggage and has well defined rules for these. Here are some of these:

  • Audio or visual equipment-

Allowance to entertainment and media companies for carrying their equipment in AA flights. This includes cameras, lighting, films and sound related equipments. On one-way domestic flights, $50 per pc is to be paid and on one-way international flights $70 per pc is to be paid. Eligible companies can take upto 25 such pcs in a flight. Once this equipment is taken, oversize and overweight fee for check in baggage is waived. However, this baggage shall not exceed 45 kg in weight and 320 cm in total dimensions.

  • Human remains-

These are carried as carry-on baggage on AA domestic flights. No special documentation is required.

  • Infant seats or child restraint seats-

Generally, these have to be checked in if it is non-collapsible in nature, is large and weight over 20 lbs.

  • Firearms and ammunition-

Within US, firearms and ammunition can be carried as check in baggage if you are above 18 years of age. These have to be declared while checking in. Firearm has to be unloaded and put in a hard-sided container under lock so that this is not accessible to anyone.

Ammunition is not to be carried as magazines or clips. This has to be in original packing right from the manufacturer or in special packages made of wood, fiber or metal with a maximum of 5 kg in a container.

  • Military baggage-

US Military personnel (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard) or their dependents, if travelling on orders can take up to 5 complimentary check-in bags of upto 100 lbs and 126 inches in total dimensions. You need to provide your military ID and order at airport to avail this allowance.

When travelling on personal reasons, you are allowed upto 3 check in bags of weight 50 lbs and 62 inches size.

  • Mobility devices-

Wheelchairs, braces and other devices used for mobility can be carried as checked baggage. This would be in addition to the normal check-in baggage allowance.

  • Musical instruments-

Musical instruments can be carried both as carry-on and check-in baggage. However, in order for these to be carried as carry-on luggage, it is required to fit either the overhead bin or underneath the seat in front. If this is not met, you need to buy an additional seat for it and the equipment shall not be more than 75 kg.

For musical instruments to be carried as check-in baggage, the size shall not be more than 381 cm in total dimensions and weight shall not be more than 75 kg.

  • Sports equipment-

Visit this post for details on AA rules on carriage of sports equipments.

  • Pets-

Visit this post for details on AA rules on carriage of pets.

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