American Airlines Baggage Fees & Tips To Cover The Expenses

American Airlines baggage fees

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American Airlines baggage fees are pretty consistent with the average when it comes to larger US-based carriers.  If you’re flying Economy, you’ll pay for all checked baggage on Domestic flights and routes to/from Canada & Mexico (exceptions for status & some credit card holders).  For most international routes, your first checked bag (or two) is included.

Where you’ll want to be careful is in the excess department of American Airlines’ baggage policy – if your luggage is both overweight and oversize, American will charge you fees for both.

AA Carry-On Allowance:

1 personal item: FREE
1 standard carry-on: FREE

Size Restrictions

  • Personal: 18″ x 14″ x 8″
  • Standard: 22″ x 14″ x9″

Lap Infant Carry-On Policy

  • Diaper bags (1 per child) at no additional cost.

Stroller Check Policy

  • Each customer is allowed 1 stroller and / or 1 car seat to be checked free of charge (only one can be checked at the gate).
  • Strollers over 20 lbs / 9kgs must be checked at ticket counter

AA Checked Baggage Allowance:

All checked bags must adhere to a max weight of 23kg for Economy & Premium Economy; 32kg for Business & First Class fares; must adhere to max linear dimensions of 62” (158cm).

Main Cabin: for purchase as per table below

Route1st Bag2nd Bag3rd Bag4th+ Bags
US Domestic
(up to 10 bags)
$25$35$150$200
Mexico
(up to 5 bags)
$25$40
Caribbean
(up to 5 bags)
$25$40/$55**
Central America
– except Panama
(up to 5 bags)
$25/$25**$40/$55**
Panama$0$40
South America
– except Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, & Venezuela
(up to 5 bags)
$0/$25*$0/$40*
Colombia$0/$25*$55
Ecuador$0$40
Venezuela$0$55
Brazil$0$0$150^$150^
Transatlantic
(up to 10 bags)
$0/$60^^$100$200$200
Transpacific
(up to 10 bags)
includedincluded

Baggage fee based on travel date and destination. Seasonal pricing applies to trips booked on / after January 9, 2018 for travel on June 20 – August 9, 2018 and December 8 – 24 or for trips booked on / after January 10, 2018 for travel on June 15 – August 12, 2018 and December 8 – 24, 2018. 

*$25 1st bag fee applies for seasonal travel to California, Colombia, and El Salvador

** $55 2nd bag fee applies for seasonal travel to Port au Prince, Haiti, and Honduras

^ Regarding tickets issues on / before January 31, 2018, 3rd and 4th checked bags are $85 or $150 for tickets issued on / after February 1, 2018.

^^This $60 charge applies for the 1st bag in Transatlantic Basic Economy.

 

Premium Economy: 2 bags included; 3+ for purchase as per table above

Business: 2 bags included; 3+ for purchase as per table above

First: 2-3 bags included**; 3+ for purchase as per table above

**The fee for a 3rd bag is charged on a two-cabin aircraft; there is no charge for a 3rd bag on a three-cabin aircraft

Credit Cards That Give You A Free Checked Bag With American Airlines

Three credit cards provide a free checked bag on your domestic flights with American Airlines. Friends and family can even receive a free checked bag when on your itinerary. Check out the details of each card’s checked bag benefit below:

Credit CardChecked Bag Benefit Details
Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select MasterCardOne free checked bag for you and up to 4 companions on your itinerary. Valid on domestic flights only.
Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCardOne free checked bag for you and up to 8 companions on your itinerary. Valid on domestic flights only.
CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select World MasterCardOne free checked bag for you and up to 4 companions on your itinerary. Valid on domestic flights only.

Credit Cards That Reimburse You For Checked Bags

If you don’t have one of the cards above, there are several cards that will reimburse you for checked bag fees on American Airlines. Even if you do have one of the co-branded Citi cards, the cards below are great when you have multiple checked bags.

Credit CardCard & Fee Reimbursement Details
Barclays Arrival® Premier World Elite MasterCard®

Barclays Arrival® Premier World Elite Mastercard®
  • Use your miles to cover any qualifying travel purchases of $100 or more, including baggage fees.
  • Earn 2X miles on every purchase made with the card.
  • Plus, EACH YEAR earn up to 25,000 loyalty bonus miles
  • Annual Fee: $150 (waived first year)
  • Rates & Fees
Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit. Up to $100 a calendar year for baggage fees at one airline. Terms Apply.
  • Earn 25,000 points after you use your new Card to make $2,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • 3x points for flights booked directly with airlines.
  • 2X points at US restaurants, US gas stations, and at US supermarkets.
  • Annual Fee: $0 for the first year, then $195
The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card® from American Express
  • $200 airline fee credit per calendar year on your previously designated airline. Terms Apply.
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • Access more than 1,100 airport lounges across 120 countries and counting, including the amazing Centurion® lounges.
  • Up to $200 Uber Savings Annually.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $550
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express OPEN

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
  • $200 airline fee credit per calendar year on your previously designated airline. Terms Apply.
  • LIMITED TIME OFFER: Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards® Points.
  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 & an extra 50,000 points after you spend an additional $15,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 8/8/18.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com.
  • Access more than 1,100 airport lounges across 120 countries and counting, including the amazing Centurion® lounges. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $450

Additional / Excess Baggage Fees:

Overweight Fee 51lb – 70lb: $100
Overweight Fee 71lb – 100lb: $200*
Oversized Fee: $150 – $200 route dependent

*Flights to/from China, Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong will cost $450. Additionally, baggage over 71lb is not permitted on transatlantic flights or flights to/from Cuba and Australia.

More than one fee may apply per bag, for example, the checked bag fee + oversize fee + overweight fee.

Specialty items (such as sporting equipment, musical instruments, etc.) are subject to special rules, exceptions, and packing instructions. The maximum weight and size for all items is 100 lbs and 126″ (l+w+h). Overweight and / or oversize charges may apply. You may find more information on specific items here. 

Exclusions & Waivers:

1st checked bag is complimentary for:

  • Eligible AAdvantage® Aviator™ and Citi® / AAdvantage® cardmembers (on domestic American Airlines operated flights)
  • AAdvantage® Gold
  • oneworld® Ruby
  • Alaska Airlines MVP members

1st and 2nd checked bags are complimentary for:

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

1st, 2nd and 3rd checked bags are complimentary for:

  • 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: 1st – 3rd bags free of charge


To see more airline baggage fees and policies, click here.

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1 comment

  1. Meghan Forde · June 6, 2018 · Reply

    I paid with my city master card for my checked luggage on April 23 rd 2018 from JFK to Orlando

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