What Is The Weight Limit For A Carry On Bag For United Airlines? 

While planning your next vacation, business flight, or any form of air travel, consider the size of your carry-on luggage so as not to delay or spoil your plans. Inasmuch as the rules regarding baggage are standardized, there are slight differences between one airline and another. We have researched all relevant information that will help you prepare for your air travel. 

United Airlines has no weight limit for a carry-on bag, however, it must follow specific dimensions and must fit in the overhead compartment of the plane. The maximum size allowed is 9 inches by 14 inches by 22 inches (22 centimeters by 35 centimeters by 56 centimeters), handles and wheels included.

Different airlines require passengers' specific weight limits and dimensions for luggage to ensure safe travels. United Airlines has similar instructions and other various requirements. In this article, we aim to inform you about the guidelines you have to follow.

A flight attendant placing travel bag in overhead baggage locker, What Is The Weight Limit For A Carry On Bag For United Airlines?

General Guidelines

Personal Items

Cabin crew lift luggage bag in airplane

Aside from your carry-on bag, you can also bring one personal item that could fit underneath the seat that is in front of you. Specific maximum dimensions, which are 9 inches by 10 inches by 17 inches (22 centimeters by 25 centimeters by 43 centimeters), also have to be met.

In addition to that, United Airlines allows you to bring any of the following listed below:

  • Jacket
  • Umbrella
  • Reading Material
  • Food or goods you bought at the airport
  • Assistive Technologies (wheelchair, cane, crutches, medical device, and any other medical devices)
  • Diaper bag
  • Camera
  • Pet carrier

Customs Declaration 

Customs Declaration, as their name implies, requires you to declare all items you purchased when you return to the United States. This includes souvenirs, gifts, and merchandise you bought for other people and yourself. 

Duty-free items procured in foreign countries and any other products you intend to use for business should also be declared on the form.

Tax And Duty-Free

Opposite to what is expected, buying certain duty-free products will not exempt you from paying duties or taxes - the merchandise is only free in the country where you purchased it.

While this is true, some duty-free products do not require any payments or have reduced rates if the countries where you bought them have a previously negotiated agreement with the United States government.

This includes the:

  • Caribbean,
  • Andean countries,
  • Israel,
  • Jordan,
  • Chile,
  • Mexico,
  • Canada,
  • and Singapore. 

To avoid any conflicts when you return to the US, it is advisable to register your items such as laptops, watches, and cameras with customs before you leave the country. By doing so, you prove that you own those materials - you did not just purchase them outside the borders.

Weight Limit On Different Airlines

The list of airlines below does not require any weight limits on carry-on bags, provided that they adhere to specific sizes. The general dimensions for carry-on bags are 9 inches by 14 inches by 22 inches (22 centimeters by 35 centimeters by 56 centimeters).

1. United Airlines

United Airlines Boeing 747-400 taking off

United Airlines may request you to check in your carry-on bag if you are traveling in a smaller plane that has limited space in the overhead compartment. 

Two standard bags are allowed to be checked in as long as they do not exceed 50 pounds (23 kilograms) and 62 inches (157 centimeters). Excess baggage is subject to fees starting at $150 for the third luggage - any additional bag will be charged depending on your route. 

2. Alaska Airlines

Alaska airlines boeing 737 landing

All travelers on Alaska Airlines are warranted to have a carry-on bag along with one personal item to take with them on board as long as it fits underneath the sit in front.

Checked baggage should not exceed linear dimensions of 62 inches (158 centimeters) and a maximum weight of 50 pounds (23 kilograms). If any of your luggage exceeds the specifications, you are required to pay an overweight and oversized fee amounting to $100 each.

3. American Airlines

American airlines airbus A319 airplane at Medellin airport

In American Airlines, pet carriers are considered as carry-on bags. 

On domestic, transatlantic, and transpacific flights, all travelers can check up to 10 bags per person. Passengers going to Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, South America, and Brazil are allowed to check up to five pieces of luggage. 

The baggage should be under 50 pounds (23 kilograms) and 62 inches (158 centimeters). If the bag exceeds the limit, you will be charged based on your route.

4. Delta Airlines

Delta air lines boeing 777 parked at the Hong Kong International Airport

Passengers can take one carry-on bag with them, however, if the plane is full or if you are on a Delta connection flight, you will be required to check in your bag at the gate without any cost. 

If you are flying to or from Shanghai or Beijing and Singapore, your carry-on bag must be under 22 pounds (10 kilograms) and 15 pounds (7 kilograms) respectively.

TSA Carry-On Rules 

Before packing and heading to the airport, you must also consider the restrictions made by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regarding any liquid materials and content. 

Carry-On Liquid Limit

The TSA allows passengers to pack any liquid containers including gels, aerosols, pastes, and creams under 3.4 ounces as long as they fit in a quart-size bag. 

Take note that if the bottles are larger than the recommended amount, even though there are only 3.4 ounces left inside, you are still not allowed to take them with you on the plane. Any belongings that go beyond the limit will proceed into checked baggage which is subjected to overweight fees.

Empty containers such as your reusable water bottle are permitted since they do not bear any liquid contents at the moment. 


1. Medications 

Any form of liquid medications does not require any specific restrictions as long as they are in reasonable quantities. Remember to declare the materials at customs or to TSA officers at the checkpoint, along with any accessories related to your medication like oxygen therapy tanks.

2. Baby Food

Any infant and child nourishment requirements are allowed to exceed the limit and do not necessarily need to fit inside a quart-size bag. Baby formulas are exempted from the carry-on liquid limit since they are classified as essential medical liquids. 

3. Duty-free Liquids

Any liquid merchandise bought at duty-free shops is exempted from the rule as long as they are safely secured and stored inside tamper-evident containers and bags. To avoid future concerns, keep the receipt in case a TSA officer requests it. 

Flammable Items

According to TSA, cigarettes, cigars, disposable lighters, and dry batteries are the only flammable items allowed to be packed inside your carry-on bag. Aerosol cans for personal care are exempted if the merchandise weighs under 3.4 ounces.

Sporting Goods And Equipment

Various sports equipment such as baseball bats, golf clubs, martial arts weapons, and sporting sticks are prohibited as carry-on luggage. These items must be transferred to checked baggage. While this is true, antlers, bike chains, bike pumps, basketball, soccer ball, and any kinds of ball equipment are allowed.

Sharp Objects

Swiss army style of mulitool knife

According to TSA, sharp objects are subject to screening and are only allowed if they do not pose a security concern. Items such as cutters, pocket knives, and swiss army knives are prohibited.

In Closing

Air travel may seem too complex and strenuous with all those requirements, however, the only purpose of all those conditions is for our own safety. We hope this article proved to be insightful.