As international business class travel becomes increasingly popular, understanding baggage allowances is critical to the journey. From weight limits to dimensions and additional fees, navigating the intricacies of baggage allowances can be daunting. However, with the expertise of Business Class Experts at your side, understanding your baggage allowances doesn’t have to be problematic. Instead, we’ll help make it a stress-free and seamless experience. 

In this article, we aim to provide a comprehensive guide on baggage allowances offered by various airlines, ensuring that business class travelers are well-informed and prepared for their trips. So, let’s jump into the world of baggage allowances and empower you to make informed decisions on your next journey!  

The Importance of Baggage Allowance in Business Class

Understanding your baggage allowance is crucial for any traveler who wants to avoid hefty fees. Not only can mistakes be costly, but they also mean longer check-in times. If your bags are overweight, you may even need to rearrange them in the middle of the airport, which can be embarrassing and stressful. Understanding your baggage allowance upfront prevents these hassles and makes for a much better experience. 

Why Baggage Allowance Matters

Knowing your baggage upfront helps you prepare for your journey. Securing the proper size suitcase, packing efficiently, and keeping your items under the weight limit are all important steps. Moreover, knowing what items are restricted in carry-on and checked bags prevents you from throwing away prohibited items or rearranging items that can’t fly in the cabin.

The Business Class Advantage

Business class travelers have many perks, including more generous baggage allowances than economy class travelers. For some airlines, that means an additional bag free of charge or a higher maximum weight limit. This advantage allows them greater flexibility in packing and enhances the comfort of their journey. 

Business Class Baggage Policies: Major Airlines Overview

By examining the free baggage allowance of major airlines for business class travelers, you’ll learn specific guidelines set by each carrier. Doing so will help you choose an airline that aligns with your needs, ensuring a smooth journey! 

United Airlines

United Airlines has a generous baggage policy, especially for business-class travelers. They get two free bags and have a weight allowance of up to 70 pounds, which is 20 pounds more than economy passengers can check. However, all checked bags have a size limit of 30 in x 20 in x 12 in, including the wheels and handles. 

British Airways

British Airways also allows business passengers to check two suitcases, which can weigh up to 70 pounds each. Moreover, they allow for slightly larger bags, up to 35 in x 30 in x 17 in. This limit makes it a great airline to travel with if you’re headed on a long-term international trip or need to transport personal items across the ocean. 


This German airline also allows business passengers to check two bags for free on international flights. Although the airline has a weight limit of 32 kilograms per suitcase, it equates to 70 pounds, making it comparable to the aforementioned airlines. The suitcases have to have a girth of no more than 62 inches, calculated by adding the length, height, and depth. 

Delta Airlines

Delta offers several classes onboard, including Delta Comfort+, Premium Select, and Delta One. Depending on which one you fly, your baggage allowances will vary

  • Comfort + & Premium Economy: One free bag (Max 50 lb/ 62 in)
  • Premium Select: Two free bags (Max 50 lb/ 62 in)
  • Delta One (Delta’s first class):  Two free bags (Max 70 lb/62 in)

Special Considerations for Business Class Baggage

Baggage policies go beyond checked suitcases, extending to carry-ons, personal items, and irregular items like sports equipment and pets. Knowing the specifics can be especially helpful if you have unique circumstances or need to transport items that are out of the ordinary.  

Additional Items and Sports Equipment

Business class includes carry-on bags and personal items, but the size limit can vary depending on the airline and destination. In addition, you can usually bring along a jacket, umbrella, duty-free items, or specialty items like strollers, car seats, wheelchairs, or crutches for free. 

If you’re traveling with an infant, be sure to check the policies regarding diaper bags and other items for the baby. Usually, they are counted as personal items, so you’ll need to factor that in when packing. 

If you’re moving to another country or need to transport multiple suitcases, you’ll likely have to pay for additional baggage. Keep in mind that most airlines have an extra baggage allowance, meaning they only allow you to pay for a certain number of extra bags. You’ll want to check with the airline to make sure you are within the limit of total number of bags allowed. 

Certain airlines count sports equipment as checked bags, but other airlines have baggage fees for specific items like surfboards and skis, factoring in their size and weight. The same applies to musical instruments, which usually count as one piece of baggage. 

If you plan on traveling with a pet, you should do your research in advance. Many airlines allow small dogs and cats as cabin baggage, but only if they meet the outlined requirements. There is also paperwork you need to carry, especially if you travel internationally. Moreover, there may be limitations on where to sit with a pet on an airplane, so be sure to check whether your airline allows pets in business class before booking your trip.  

Fragile and Valuable Items

Souvenirs like pottery, alcohol, antiques, jewelry, and even cash are subject to unique airline policies. Most airlines allow you to check fragile items, but they are not liable for damage or loss. If possible, it’s best to always carry any objects of high or sentimental value with you. That way, you can make sure they are safe and accounted for. 

If you have to check fragile items, such as liquids or bulky objects, wrap them properly with bubble wrap. When dealing with items that can be bent or wrinkled, such as art or manuscripts, use cardboard and tape to secure the item after wrapping it in plastic. Place these items in the middle of your suitcase so they don’t get bumped. If possible, you may want to place small objects that can’t travel with you in a shoe or secure compartment of your bag. 

Restrictions and Prohibited Items

Some items, such as electronic devices and batteries, can be packed in your carry-on baggage but must be removed during security screening. Check the baggage rules ahead of time so you can pack appropriately. 

Unfortunately, not all your belongings are safe to fly. Some items cannot be placed in your carry-on bag and must be placed in your checked bag. Examples include:

  • Liquids or aerosols over 3.4 oz
  • Cutting instruments 

On the other hand, restricted items may not be brought on the aircraft, with no exceptions. This list will depend on your final destination, especially on international flights. Here are some examples of items you cannot bring on a plane. 

  • Alcohol over 140 proof
  • Explosives
  • Certain animal products (when traveling to Europe)
  • Plants or seeds (on flights to or from the USA)

Check out the TSA website for a comprehensive list of what the U.S. Department of Transportation allows. This list should cover all your bases if you’re traveling on a domestic flight! 

Loyalty Programs and Baggage Perks

In addition to the standard baggage allowance, many airline loyalty programs offer exclusive perks and benefits to frequent travelers. These advantages may depend on your status level, but some airlines offer a free bag to all members. Therefore, it’s a good idea to check out any available rewards programs before flying to see if you are eligible for perks. Sometimes, all you need to do is join to start benefiting! 

Of course, many people prefer to avoid joining multiple airline reward programs, especially if they need to apply for a credit card or pay an annual fee. When selecting an airline program to join, consider factors such as: 

  • Airline’s route network
  • Benefits offered
  • Extra baggage allowance
  • Partnership with other airlines
  • Cost-value relationship (if there is a fee)

Tips for Packing and Maximizing Your Business Class Allowance

Smart packing is essential for maximizing your business class baggage allowance without over-packing. Here are a few tips to help you pack lighter, no matter your travel class. 

  • Plan Ahead: Make a list of essential items and plan outfits using versatile items. 
  • Pack Efficiently: Use space bags to seal air out of your clothing or packing cubes that keep everything organized. 
  • Wear Bulky Items: Wearing your boots and coat instead of packing them saves a lot of space. Plus, it keeps you warm on the plane! 
  • Weigh Your Luggage: Don’t risk it! Hand-held scales can help you weigh your bags ahead of time, even if you’re on the return trip of your journey. This simple step can save you hundreds of dollars in excess baggage charges. 

If you need to take a lot of items, it may be better to have your luggage shipped in advance. Multiple companies offer this service, even internationally. One benefit to this is that you won’t have to handle all your baggage in the airport, especially if connecting flights require you to recheck your items on your stopover. 

However, buying bulky items like shampoo or snacks at your destination may be a better solution. Plus, it’s a great excuse to go shopping. 

Get Expert Guidance on Luggage with Business Class Experts

Planning a trip requires a lot of forethought and planning. Thankfully, checked baggage allowances aren’t as strict when you fly business class, so you should have enough room to pack your essentials. 

If you have special circumstances and need help figuring out how to take more for less, Business Class Experts can help. Contact us for a personalized consultation and baggage planning assistance!