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Carry on baggage

New Arrival

I am a loyal customer of Southwest. I have been traveling with SW for many years.  I travel approximately once a month. I normally travel to and from the same airports but have recently traveled with them to other locations outside of my norm.

I dont understand why the overhead baggage is allowed to be overused, abused and not controlled more by ground crews or whatever crew needs to 'control' this.

I have consistantly seen bags larger then allowed to be crammed in and still not fitting until a flight attendant takes the bag out and readjusts and reorganizes. Clearly, the bags are too big.

With SW policy of 2 free bags, WHY oh WHY is SW allowing this type of on boarding and off boarding conditions.  On my recent flight a woman walked up to the boarding attendant with 2 bags and asked if one could be checked?  WHat !  Didnt she realize before getting to the gate that she had 2 bags!!!!!  This of course took time for the boarding staff to explain to her how to check her bag at the gate. This held up the boarding passengers.

On my last flight I took an aisle seat.  The passenger in the middle seat , sitting after i had taken my seat, had several items on the floor in front of her. I beleive to have been a bag and a coat. 3 Flight attendants looked at this ...mess...and did not say a word to her.  THREE !!  Not sure why! But, this is NOT acceptable for inflight safety!  She was also talking on her phone until just 30 seconds from take off.

I beleive that those of us who do not carry on should be rewarded and 1st board/unboarding should be given to us.  Why should I have to wait for everyone to get their bags from some obscure overhead compartment when I dont carry on and SW is offering 2 checked bags FREE!  FREE PEOPLE FREE !!!! I would love to see how much actual time it takes for board and unboard flyers without all the overhead baggage. When I ask people why they carryon they say The Wait time at the baggage carousol is too long.  I havent found that to be the case. I think we spend more time waiting for everyone to get their carry-ons down.

As I mentioned earlier, I am a frequent flyer, I always (always) recommend SW to anyone that is looking for flight recommendations.  I have been very loyal.  But, recently, the crammed seating, the overhead situations has gotten to be too much for me.  SW you have lost a good customer and and loyal friend.

18 REPLIES 18
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Re: Carry on baggage

Retired Community Manager

Hi @jhalt

 

Welcome to the Southwest Airlines Community. 

 

We love it when Customers take advantage of our Bags Fly Free policy, but Customers are also more than welcome to bring along a carryon item plus one small personal item when they board the plane. Everyone travels differently, and everyone's style will vary a little bit. 

 

Of course, our top priority will always be the Safety of our Customers and Employees. If you observe a situation that you believe will interfere with your Safety or the Safety of others, please immediately alert a Southwest Airlines Employee so we can assess the situation and take corrective action. 

 

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

Dear Lindsey, Perhaps you haven't flown on one of your planes recently. The small personal item you mentioned has morphed into a back pack or similar sized container. The bag that is supposed to fit within your stated dimensions doesn't exist. I have had these small trunks banging into me as they are trundled down the aisle and am concerned when they are lifted into the overhead bin above my head. How the flight attendants don't come down with hernias lifting some of these things is beyond me. Why should it be up to the passenger to report these things? The check-in desk clerk can see these and there are wire frame models (I have seen them used) that can be used to identify the over size bags at the counter. The same is true for the boarding clerk and finally the flight attendants. Frankly I am tired of putting up with these oversize bags. God forbid there should be some severe turbulence and these things should tumble out of the overhead bin, someone will be seriously hurt and the airline will be in a hell of a mess.

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

Lindsey, this response doesn’t speak to the question. It’s the responsibility of employees to follow the company rules. This complaint is not so much a safety issue as convenience.
I too have experienced this with Southwest. A few months ago many of us had to wait on the ramp for a good while while the airline staff asked people to remove bags from overhead and gate check them because too many people had brought beyond what was allowed. It was a mess. 
Southwest employees are obviously trained to be pleasant and accommodating, but the way you handle bags can make the experience less satisfying.

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

I completely agree with you about the abuse of carry on items. I fly 2-3 times per month and nearly every flight I see passengers disregard instructions to place smaller items completely under their seats.

 

They blithely stuff jackets, small tote bags, theme park souvenir bags, briefcases, etc. overhead. I am usually an A1-15, so it doesn't affect me, but it's inconsiderate of those who board later. It also takes precious time for passengers or flight attendants to try to reorganize to fit roller bags in the overhead.

 

I would stand up and applaud if a crew member stopped a jacket/tote/Legoland bag stuffer from jamming up the overhead! 

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

My issue is people who carry on large bags rather than check them at the counter . They hold up the people boarding and also during the off loading process ! 

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

Let's also not forget those that leave their personal item in the overhead bin on crowded flights.  These should go under the seat in front of you so that those needing the overhead space (for their normal-sized carry-on!) can stow their carry-on and get out of the way... 

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

My personal item is a brief case with my work and laptop in it. I check my carryon, so I don't have to put a 30 pound brief case by my feet. I definitely deserve the overhead space and am taking up far less than someone who brings on a carry on.

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Re: Carry on baggage

New Arrival

As a frequent flyer I agree with a lot of what you have said. My main complaint is the person who boards the plane, puts their luggage in an overhead bin close to the front, and then takes a seat several rows away. That inconveniences the person who is going to sit under that compartment and forces them to scramble to find another place for their bag. It also holds up the line of boarding passengers while they do this.

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Re: Carry on baggage

Retired Community Manager

Hi @autobuyer,

 

If you see abuse of the carryon bag allowance, please alert a Southwest Airlines Employee. In many cases, Customers simply may not be familiar with our policies, and we'll be able to assist them by gate checking any items that are too large to fit in the overhead bins or below the seats.