Overweight Luggage

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by jdale6650, Jan 15, 2016.  |  Print Topic

  1. jdale6650

    jdale6650 New Member

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    I managed to get a great deal flying from Newark Airport in NYC to Raleigh NC on January 6th. The flight was under $200 and I was quite happy about finding it. Unfortunately when I got to the airport UA counter, my suitcase was overweight. The night before I had dutifully gone online to check in and paid $25 for my one suitcase. Now at the airport I had to slide my suitcase onto a scale with an ATM-looking electronic device attached to it. There were several there for passengers to weigh their luggage. I did so and found that my suitcase was over the 50 lb limit. I had assumed it might be but since I had no scale at home I was prepared to pay the additional charge for the extra weight. But I was shocked to find that the charge was $125.00 (in addition to the $25 already online) for anything over 50 lbs. It didn't matter whether it was one pound or twenty pounds. THAT is ridiculous and highway robbery to have to pay $150.00 for one suitcase that was overweight!! Later I searched the UA website to see if I had missed a glaring warning that overweight luggage would cost so much and there was NO mention of this....only a mention that additional charges would apply for any luggage overweight. I'm sorry but this is excessive! I am a senior and could not afford to pay this but I did as I had no choice. I had taken a shuttle to the airport so I couldn't even empty some of the contents and store it in my car. I will never fly UA again for this reason. That is taking advantage of the customer. I have continued to search the UA website for plain English where the passenger is told about this excessive charge but have yet to find it. No doubt it is buried somewhere in the fine print but that is no excuse for this type of robbery. I shouldn't have to be a frequent flyer to be treated fairly.
    NYCUA1K and Counsellor like this.
  2. Counsellor
    Original Member

    Counsellor Gold Member

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    Welcome to InsideFlyer, jdale6650. We hope you enjoy what you see here and come back often.

    Airlines now are charging for all sorts of things to make additional revenue, so we passengers have to expect extra charges, but $125 for luggage on a $200 ticket does seem excessive.

    If it was a matter of just a few pounds, there are some tricks you can use to bring the weight down. For instance, if you've packed a jacket (even a heavy one), take it out and wear it, or carry it over your arm and put it in the overhead when you board. If you're bringing a computer as a carry-on, there may be room in the computer bag for small (but heavier) items from the checked luggage. Or if you have a carry-on bag, you may be able to shift some of the material from the checked luggage to the carry-on. In my experience, they seldom weigh the carry-on even though they always weigh the checked luggage.

    These tricks can drop the weight of the checked luggage a few pounds, but if your suitcase was at 60 or more, they may not help.

    You mention not having a scale at home to weigh the checked luggage, but if you have a bathroom scale, you can get a very close approximation of the weight by weighing yourself, then picking up the bag and weighing yourself again.


    If you go to this link on the United site


    You'll find:
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2016
  3. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    How were you prepared for it if you didn't bother to look up what the fee was? Sounds like you weren't prepared at all. It is pretty easy to find the info on the website under checked baggage details. Sorry you missed it.

    The rules are clearly published. And the baggage fee has nothing to do with the price of your ticket. A $1500 fare would have the same fee.
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  4. satman40

    satman40 Gold Member

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    Always carry a back pack,, if you feel the need to take extras...

    I keep any checked luggage to a minimum
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  5. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    The ridiculous part is that you'd pay the flat fee ($200, $400) regardless of whether you are 1lb or 5lb over the cutoff weight!

    I just returned from SE Asia where I had a checked suitcase that weighed 5kg over (28kg rather than 23kg) to fly on PG (Bangkok Airways) from Koh Samui (USM) to BKK, and I was charged just $35 as the fee was $7 per extra kg. That's a more sensible fee structure than the flat fee imposed by UA.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2016
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  6. Dublin_rfk

    Dublin_rfk Gold Member

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    Yes the $125.00 is (in my own opinion) a little high. That said I frequently see people show up with multiple (and very large) bags to check in. In one instance in PHL the person ran up a baggage fee of over $700.00usd.
    As for not flying UA again well jump on a low fare with one of the 'discount' providers and see what fees are really like.
    Good luck and safe travels!
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