Spirit Airlines Baggage Fees & How To Avoid Paying Them!

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Customers need to be careful about how charges like baggage fees add up on budget airlines like Spirit.

Spirit Airlines does not include any bags in their base allowance (Bare Fare), not even carry-ons. Additionally, baggage prices increase the closer you get to take-off.  This means your best bet is to buy your allowance during your initial booking.

Another consideration: Spirit’s baggage policy states the max checked bag weight allowed is 40lbs.  This is 10lbs less than the standard average and you’d better believe you’ll be paying extra for that difference.

Spirit Airlines Carry-On Allowance

1 personal item: FREE with Bare Fare
Standard carry-on bag: 
During Booking:

  • $9 fare club – $28
  • Standard – $37

Before & During Online Check-In:

  • $9 fare club – $36
  • Standard – $45

Airport Reservation Desk: $55

At Gate: $65

Size Restrictions

  • Personal: 18″ x 14″ x 8″
  • Standard: 22″ x 18″ x10″

Lap Infant Carry-On Policy

  • Breast pumps and baby formula are allowed to be carried onto an aircraft and don’t count against your carry-on allowance.

Stroller Check Policy

  • Spirit airlines will check a stroller or double stroller at the ticket counter or gate. The stroller will be waiting for you when you exit the aircraft.

Spirit Airlines Checked Baggage Allowance

All checked bags must adhere to a max weight of 40lbs and must adhere to max linear dimensions of 62 inches.

Spirit Airlines considers a number of items in their fee calculations, including: route, dates of travel, and $9 fare club or Standard fare.  The following table displays general fees for MOST* routes.

For the most personal/ accurate baggage fee calculations, please use Spirit’s online baggage calculator tool here.

Checked BagDuring Spirit.com
Before Online
During Online
Group Desk,
Res Center
At Gate
$9 Fare
Std$9 Fare
Std$9 Fare
1st Bag$23$32$33$42$33$42$52$65
2nd Bag$33$42$43$52$43$52$62n/a
3rd-5th Bags$78$87$88$97$88$97$102n/a

*Some routes may limit the number of checked bags allowed (please refer to online baggage calculator tool).

Additional / Excess Baggage Fees:

Overweight Fee
41 – 50lb: $30
51 – 70lb: $55
71 – 100lb: $100

Oversized Fee
63 – 80 linear inches: $100
Special items over 80 linear inches: $150

For baggage fees related to special luggage (sporting equipment, musical instruments, etc.) please refer to Spirit Airlines’ policy here. 

Can I Pre-pay for Baggage?

Spirit Airlines does allow passengers the ability to pre-pay for luggage online, via the mobile app or by contacting their call center.

Here are the ways you can pre-pay:

  • Log in to your reservation via the ‘My Trips’ tab on the Spirit website and click ‘Add bags’. This can be done more than 24 hours before departure. For less than 24 hours before departure, use the ‘Online check-in’ tab.
  • Download and log in to the Spirit Airlines app.
  • Contact the Spirit Airlines call center on 801-401-2222

Avoid Paying Baggage Fees by Using These Credit Cards

Spirit is notorious for fees, but you can use a few different credit cards to reimburse your checked bag and carry-on fees.

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card - This no annual fee card comes with a 20,000 mile welcome bonus (worth $200). When you use your card for travel purchases (e.g. baggage fees), use your miles to pay off all, or part of, your statement! This is why we like this card.
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card - The "big brother" card to the VentureOne® with a larger 50,000 welcome bonus (worth $500) and you'll earn 10X miles per $1 spent across thousands of hotels.

Exclusions & Waivers

For active duty military, Spirit will provide two free checked bags and a free carry-on, in addition to the already free personal item.

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


What does Spirit charge for carry on?

Spirit allows passengers to bring 1 personal item for free but they charge for standard carry-on. During booking, if you’re part of Spirit’s $9 Fare Club then a carry-on bag costs $28 and non-members $37. Before or during online check-in, $9 Fare Club members will pay $36 and non-members $45. At the reservation desk, all passengers will pay $55 and at the gate $65.

Can I take a backpack on Spirit Airlines for free?

You could take a backpack on Spirit Airlines for free as your personal item, provided the measurements of the backpack do not exceed 18″ x 14″ x 8″. If it is larger than these measurements then you would incur a fee for standard carry-on with a maximum size allowance of 22″ x 18″ x10″.

What does Spirit charge for bags?

For most routes, Spirit’s checked baggage fees vary depending on whether you’re a $9 Fare Club member and when/where you add your baggage. During booking its $23 for members, $32 for non-members, before and during online check-on its $33 for members, $42 for non-members, at the reservation desk its $52 and at the gate $62. 2nd – 5th bag charges increase in price. See our table above.

Does Spirit Airlines give military free baggage?

Spirit Airlines will provide active duty military with two checked bags and a carry-on piece for free in addition to the already free personal item.

How much is overweight baggage on Spirit?

For overweight baggage, Spirit charges $30 for bags weighing 41 – 50lb, $55 for bags weighing 51 – 70lb and $100 for bags weighing 71 – 100lb. If your bags are oversized (63 – 80cm) then you will be charged $100 and for special items over 80cm the fee is $150.

Erin Miller

About Erin Miller

Erin currently maintains her status as Alex's adventure-seeking partner-in-crime and contributes to Upgraded Points through content creation & relationship management.
She caught the travel bug just after high school when her grandmother took her on a two-week, whirlwind trip around Europe. That was that - she's been gallivanting around the globe ever since (22 countries & counting)!


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  1. Amanda wallace · April 10, 2018 · Reply

    I’m confused about the credit card reimbersment ? If I use my card are they going to charge extra on it when I go online to check my bag?

    • Nope, what happens is you pay for the bags and then your credit card company will reimburse the fee. The “how” depends on your specific credit card, e.g. it might be a statement credit or you might be able to use points to offset that cost when your statement is ready to be paid.

  2. Felisa Kershaw · May 27, 2018 · Reply

    What do I have to do to check my luggage online? How much is it check in luggage? This will be my first time flying with spirit in July. I don’t want to be embarrassed at check in. What is the total cost for my luggage the whole trip? I will not have a carry on bag just my purse. This flight is so stressful!!! For example delta cost is $25 leaving out and $25 coming back. I hope that you can answer my question. Hopefully you can make this a joyful weekend for me and my 3 sister’s. Thanks in advance

    • Hi Felisa – First of all, let me be clear that we are not Spirit Airlines. We are Upgraded Points, an online website that provides articles on a variety of topics related to earning points and miles. I understand you are having some issues figuring out your baggage costs for a Spirit flight. We completely understand baggage fees can be confusing which is why we attempt to outline things in our articles here. However, airlines don’t have the clearest policies to begin with so that can make summarizing them really tough. To figure out your fees, what I would recommend is to use Spirit Airlines Baggage Fee Calculator on Spirit Airlines official website. Since we are not Spirit Airlines, we cannot give you the specific answer you are looking for. This official calculator should provide the most accurate information. You can find it here: https://www.spirit.com/OptionalServices. You will need your flight dates as well as your airport locations. This will give you a range of prices that will depend on when you actually purchase your luggage allowance. Yes, it’s confusing and yes, it’s one of the reasons Spirit Airlines customers complain a lot! Hope this helps…

  3. Alexia Renee · July 14, 2018 · Reply

    Can I pay for the luggage at the airport ? If so how much is it ?

  4. Daniel Rodríguez · August 12, 2018 · Reply

    The worst airlines are always late and they charge you for everything. Dont waste your time and money. Dont be cheap, at the end it will cost you more! Use others airlines like jetblue, american, etc…

  5. I’m flying to the Caribbean at the end of the month and i could only find 1 flight with spirit. Its actually 6 planes that i have to get on to get there and back. And they are charging us for baggage on each flight. It totals our to 553$! I will NEVER fly spirit airlines again.

    You do get one free carryon though… the size of a purse or smaller

    • It just happened here yesterday, they charged me $65 for the smallest bag I bought, I paid for 3 bags for each flight… This is insane! I will never fly Spirit Airlines again!

  6. Felicia Ann Hutson · August 29, 2018 · Reply

    Wow, I’ve never been on a plane befor and to be ready to get on this plane really makes me not to want to fly any more. Im hope my flight goes well in October.

  7. Valerie · October 1, 2018 · Reply

    I flew spirit this past weekend. I only had a bookbag carry on. they were fine with it when I flew to Myrtle Beach but on my return flight they made me pay $55.00 to take it on the plane and it was the same bag!!!. Never again!!!!! what a scam they have!

  8. I Guarantee I Will Never Use Spirit Airlines Again.
    I have four flights and three of the four flights are with Spirit.
    I will not make this mistake again. I hope everyone does the same and let them check their bags on their way out of business. Poor excuse for customer service.

  9. Stefanie Lange · January 4, 2019 · Reply

    I read awhile back that Spirit airlines was changing the weight limit from 40 to 50 lbs. Us that not true?

  10. Spirit website says 100lb checked bag restriction. Where do you get this 40lb number from??

  11. Cathy HAMILTON · March 14, 2019 · Reply

    I called to cancel my flights for March 22-24. I already paid for baggage each way and I was told baggage is nonrefundable. How in the world can this be? This is ridiculous!!!

    • Hey Cathy, this really stinks! Unfortunately, issues like this are why Spirit generally gets a bad rap! (You can read more in our review of Spirit Airlines here.)

      They charge a ton of fees and aren’t great on the customer service side of things… there are even a couple of other airlines that follow this same policy. Ugh!

      It really stinks but there’s not a whole lot you can do about it – we’d be interested to know if any other readers have had this issue and have had it positively resolved?

  12. naty Almeida · April 17, 2019 · Reply

    This is going to be my first time flying with Spirit… I just have a bookbag, but I do not know if the bookbag is the perfect size?. This flight is so stressful!

    • Catherine Luther · April 18, 2019 · Reply

      Hi Naty,

      Did you add a carry-on bag to your booking? If you didn’t, then your carry-on allowance would be a personal item only measuring 18″ x 14″ x 8″. If you did add a carry-on bag, then you are permitted the personal item and a piece of carry-on measuring 22″ x 18″ x 10″.

      • Melissa · May 12, 2019 · Reply

        So if I have a personal item, which is a backpack that is 18”x14”x8” it’s free?

        • Catherine Luther · May 13, 2019 · Reply

          Hi Melissa, yes – if your backpack does not exceed the maximum size of a personal item (18″ x 14″ x 8″,) then this would comply with Spirit’s baggage policy and would be included in a bare fare ticket. If it does exceed these restrictions then you would need to pay for a larger bag.

  13. Brittini Manley · April 23, 2019 · Reply

    If I prepaid for a “carry on”, can I switch that to a “checked bag” once I get to the airport? Also, will they charge me?

    • Hi Brittini – you should be able to switch at the airport – simply let the agent know at the check-in counter that you would like to switch your carry-on to a checked bag.

      And yes, they will most certainly charge you if there is a difference in the two fees. Since we are not Spirit, I cannot confirm if they will charge you the difference between the fees, or simply charge you the entire checked bag fee. If you’re concerned, I would call their main reservation line (1-801-401-2222) and inquire with them directly.

  14. Joe Marino · May 2, 2019 · Reply

    Total rip off, how are you supposed to pack for a week under 40 pounds

    • Katie Seemann · May 3, 2019 · Reply

      Hi Joe,
      Yes, 40lbs is a little lower than most airlines’ weight limit. If you choose to fly Spirit it’s a good idea to add up all of the extra charges, including a potential overweight bag fee to see if you are saving money or not.

  15. Novelita · June 19, 2019 · Reply

    I’m flying to Cancun this weekend with Spirit Airlines. I’m bringing one personal item (18x14x8 it’s a small mini suitcase). Is there a weight restrictions on personal item?

    • Catherine Luther · June 19, 2019 · Reply

      Hi Novelita,

      Spirit does not state any weight allowances for a personal item within their baggage policy so as long as it adheres to the size allowance then you should be fine.

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