Will you be able to take your hand luggage on a plane for free this summer?

Image of suitcases on a conveyor belt at the airportEP/file

The Airline Association (ALA) stressed that charging for carry-on baggage is not an illegal practice at this time because the Department of Consumer Affairs’ sanctions are not yet harsh and because, in addition, four airlines are “low cost” affected (Ryanair, Vueling, EasyJet and Volotea) have the opportunity to appeal.

After notification firm sanctionairlines have approximately one month to file an appeal an appeal to the Ministry, a procedure that will last about three months. After this, file an appeal with the National Court, which each company must do individually. So midway through the summer tourist season, travelers will have to continue paying.

President of the Association, Javier Gandaraassured that this decision will harm consumers who will see ticket prices rise, and will cause delays I had to carry some of the suitcases into the hold due to lack of space in the cabin. In addition, he warns that he will contribute guest flight to other countries, with 78% of foreigners repeating Spain as a holiday destination.

How long can hand luggage be?

The ALA claims that up to 40% of travelers on these four low-cost airlines, that is, about 50 million clientsthey “benefit” from cheaper tickets without carrying almost no luggage. And they claim that all companies allow you to travel with a small package that can be placed under the front seat.

But what measures maxims must have hand luggage? Since the Air Navigation Act does not specify dimensions and weights, airlines can set them at their own discretion and discretion.

However, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) recommends that carry-on baggage dimensions should not exceed 55 (height) x 35 (width) x 20 (depth) centimeters, including wheels, handles and pockets. Here’s what the four convicted companies say:

Ryanair. A small piece of luggage is always included in all rates (from 40x20x25 cm.), which should fit under the seat, as the company itself explains on its website. The maximum permitted weight is 5 kilograms.

Vueling. Carry-on baggage under the seat will be checked in for up to €75 if it exceeds 40x30x20 centimeters. If its dimensions exceed 55 x 40 x 20 cm, the bill will be up to 140 euros. As for weight, they allow a limit of 10 kilograms.

EasyJet. They clarify that you can carry one small piece of hand luggage per person free of charge on board the plane, if its size does not exceed 45x36x20 sms. (including handles and wheels). Your carry-on suitcase can weigh up to 15 kilogramsas detailed by the company.

Volotya. The set of hand luggage and suitcase in hand luggage cannot exceed 10 kilograms weight. Otherwise, they note, an additional payment of 60 euros per piece will be paid one way. As for the measurements, they indicate that it should have a maximum size 55x40x20 centimeters.

Plenary session European ParliamentOctober 4, 2023, stated uniform and consistent standards which unify the prices that airlines can charge for carry-on bags, as well as the sizes they must be in order to avoid creating hidden fees and difficulties when comparing prices.

The adopted text emphasizes citizens’ concerns about the inconvenience caused by the heterogeneous rules for air transportation of hand luggage, considering that it should review legislation European Union (EU) passenger rights proposal to propose a solution.

Sanctions against airlines for “non-transparency”

Consumption penalties are calculated based on the additional fee for reserving an adjacent seat for accompanying minors or dependents, as well as the fee for carrying hand luggage, “opaque” pre-contractual information Regarding the price of the service, there is a ban on payment in cash and an additional charge of 20 euros for reprinting a boarding pass at the airport, OCU reports.

Faqua also explains that the largest sanctions were applied to Ryanair, first of these companies that started charging for hand luggage in November 2018. It is followed by Vueling and, “at a much greater distance”, EasyJet and Volotea.

These are the first fines imposed by the Spanish government’s Consumer Protection Authority since it assumed sanctioning powers in May 2022 following changes to the general consumer protection law.

In addition, sanctions that amount to 150 million euros“They are also the highest measures taken by the authority” for consumer protection in history, Faqua said.

In June 2023, Consumer opened a case to investigate whether these practices were abusive or unfair and whether they violated the rules.

On the other hand, the Secretary General of the UGT, Pepe Alvarezbelieves that “given how much airlines make” by charging for carry-on baggage, it is “ridiculous to impose such a low fine” and believes that if they are “knowingly” breaking the law, they should “move to another stage, which is that do with Criminal offense“for its directors or owners.

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