All airlines I have flown with so far specify both the dimensions and the weight for their carry-on allowance. Most also allow a "personal item" (or under-the-seat luggage) and when they do, they specify maximum dimensions, but NOT the maximum weight for this item (as far as I can tell).

In particular ITA Airways (who I will be flying with next week) have this to say on the topic of hand baggage (emphasis mine):

The hand baggage you bring on board with you may weigh no more than 8 kg and measure no more than 55 cm in height, 35 cm in width and 25 cm in depth including handles, side pockets and wheels.

ITA SpA also lets you bring an accessory of your choice from the following:

  • Handbag
  • Work backpack
  • Laptop computer


The groundcrew will provide an “Under the seat” label for all small luggage (no larger than 36 cm in height, 45 cm in width and 20 cm in depth) for all domestic and international ITA SpA flights for all destinations.

The first highlight in the first paragraph might suggest that 8kg is the total weight passengers are allowed to bring along in luggage. Considering that the second highlighted passage is added onto this information with an "and", that reading doesn't make sense to me. Even more so since they go on to say that one can "also" bring luggage of another description. This "other" luggage seems to be what's referred to in the last paragraph which specifies only outer dimensions.

Is there usually a restriction to the weight of this personal item on European flights (and in particular on ITA flights)? If so, where can I usually find this information?

  • 1
    My roller suitcase has been weighed occasionally (but not recently). My backpack has never been weighed.
    – Hilmar
    Sep 14, 2022 at 12:28
  • Despite having spent hours packing and repacking two backpacks to remain under the 8kg limit (IIRC) for a Lufthansa flight 4 years ago, nobody looked twice at any of our carry-on luggage. Of course, things can (and do) change.
    – FreeMan
    Sep 14, 2022 at 16:30
  • I always worry about being slightly over the size and or weight limit with carry on stuff but even with budget airlines they never seem to check anything that seems reasonably close to the guidelines. Boarding needs to happen quickly and it would take forever if they actually weighed and sized everything. It's probably much better for their business to let small deviances slide than try and play luggage police at the gate for some 10s of dollars. Checked luggage is a whole different story, they are much more likely to enforce restrictions there, even slight overages.
    – eps
    Sep 14, 2022 at 18:59
  • what's a "European flight"?
    – njzk2
    Sep 14, 2022 at 21:04

1 Answer 1


“European flights” are a vast topic, with dozens of airlines each having their own policies.

The most restrictive are usually the low-cost carriers (LCCs), with the largest ones (Easyjet and Ryanair) by default (without paying extra) only allowing one single item of the “under-seat” size. They of course have different maximum sizes for these, but Ryanair apparently has no weight limit for this one while Easyjet has a 15 kg limit, though you must be “able to lift and carry it yourself”.

Unless you know the specific airlines you will travel with (and what options you are willing to pay for), it’s very difficult to give a blanket rule. Some will only allow a small item, some a larger one ( it only one), some both, the sizes will be different, and the weight limits, if they exist, will be different.

Note that while sizers for hand luggage are common, scales are much less common, especially at the gate. Years ago I know Aer Lingus could be strict with their 7kg limit if you had to go through check-in desks (where they have scales) but if you got to the gate directly nobody would mind, for instance.

  • Lufthansa had scales at the gate for a while. Check-in doesn't help much since most people do check in online or come from a transfer. In fact, some airlines charge you extra for checking in at the counter
    – Hilmar
    Sep 14, 2022 at 12:29

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .