I'm working on an itinerary that consists of XXX → OAK → HNL → XXX, with a ~1 day stopover in OAK. The XXX → OAK leg is on AA and the OAK → HNL leg is on HA, and as far as I know, both carriers interline baggage.

However, I'm not sure how baggage interlining works with such a long stopover in one's itinerary. Will the airport be able to hang onto our checked bags for that long, or will we need to claim our bags, haul them around Oakland, and then re-check them for the OAK → HNL leg? Also, does it matter if we plate the tickets on AA or HA for this?

NB: XXX is an airport within the contigious 48 states of the US, hidden for privacy reasons

  • 2
    There's usually a difference between a layover (a stop, where you usually stay within the airport, though you may venture out) and a stopover (where there's a split in the travel, and usually one or more nights between the two legs). The limit is often set at 24 hours between scheduled arrival time and scheduled departure, though that may vary. If the stop is considered as a stopover, I would be surprised if they would allow your bags to be checked through, but this may depend on actual airline policies.
    – jcaron
    Commented Apr 24, 2016 at 22:30
  • @jcaron -- it is an overnight stop; however, it is less than 24h long. Commented Apr 24, 2016 at 22:34
  • It will then probably depend on the fare rules applicable to your ticket (most of the cheaper fares don't allow for stopovers, only layovers). What is your actual preferred option, check through to HNL, or be able to pick up the luggage in OAK then check it back in the next day? What's the actual fare code?
    – jcaron
    Commented Apr 24, 2016 at 22:39
  • @jcaron -- we'd much rather check through to HNL (saves us having to drag the bags around Oakland for a day). The outbound legs are a QA21ZNH3 on AA and a SHW0O on HA, btw. Commented Apr 24, 2016 at 22:53
  • 1
    Airlines usually limit bag hold times to 6 hours for domestic flights (sometimes longer if it is mandatory connection, arrive on once a day morning flight connecting to once a day evening flight). An overnight hold of almost 24 hours (and being interline and looking like separate tickets?) will be highly unlikely.
    – user13044
    Commented Apr 25, 2016 at 1:47

2 Answers 2


The official source of truth here is is American Airlines Contract of Carriage, which governs all tickets purchased for travel on American Airlines.

The first relevant section here is under "Definitions", where it states :

Stopover - a deliberate interruption of travel for more than 4 hours constitutes a domestic stopover unless specified otherwise."

The second is under "Checking your bag", where it states in part :

Baggage will not be checked:

  • To a city not on your routing
  • Beyond your next stopover city

Based on the 4 hour rule, what you have in Oakland is a "Stopover", and thus Oakland is a "stopover city".

So fairly clearly, AA will only check your bags to Oakland, and not any further.

This is fairly common for US airlines - especially for domestic connections. Internationally some airlines will hold bags for longer, but even that would not occur for connections equal or greater to 24 hours.


This is a very specific situation so the only way to answer this question is to make the reservation*, then call AA and ask. You may have to ask more than once, finding an Agent (more seniority is better) who knows what to look for, because there are several factors that come into play.

  • The exact scope of the Interline between AA and HA. Because they compete on these routes, AA might not even issue a ticket for the OAK-HNL sector.
  • The Baggage facilities at OAK. AA, HA, or OAK might not permit baggage stored over x hours outside of IROPS. I've had to claim bags on an ~8 hour connection. ~24 hours is a relatively long time.
  • HA might not accept bags before a certain time. Again, 24 hours is a long time.
  • Connection vs Stopover. If it's a Stopover, you will definitely have to claim and recheck.

No, it is highly unlikely whose ticket stock used would make a difference. The baggage transfer rules would be the same.

For 24hrs, you might consider an inexpensive airport hotel to store the bags.

*I say make the reservation first so you can build it exactly the way you want and even an experienced Agent would likely build a reservation anyway just to see what Sabre spits out. If you don't like the answer, you can cancel.

  • I am not short on data. Absolutely no clarification necessary. These are all factors the OP will have to address when making the booking or be prepared to handle on the described itinerary. Downvote totally unwarranted.
    – DTRT
    Commented Sep 17, 2016 at 2:51
  • The Agent does not decide on their own, the rules are are the rules but some Agent either don't notice them or don't read them correctly. Agent shopping is not at all uncommon. The relationship between AA and HA is somewhat complicated with many exemptions and exclusions, unlike that with AS or BA.
    – DTRT
    Commented Sep 17, 2016 at 12:11
  • It's not a matter of applying or 'bending' the rule or getting an exemption. It's simply knowing how to correctly interpret the rule. An Agent with 20 years seniority will much more likely give a correct interpretation than one with 1 year.
    – DTRT
    Commented Sep 17, 2016 at 12:41
  • 2
    I'm stopping here. I addressed all of the OP's points and made recommendations on how to approach the situation and what to consider. I specifically give advice on making sure the booking met their expectations. I stand by my answer 100%.
    – DTRT
    Commented Sep 17, 2016 at 12:51
  • Downvote? Really? Totally unwarranted and wrong.
    – DTRT
    Commented Oct 19, 2016 at 16:14

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