Air New Zealand Baggage Fees: What To Expect

Air New Zealand is a popular airline that offers service to more than 50 destinations around the globe. If you’re looking at flights for an upcoming trip and are thinking about booking with Air New Zealand, one thing you’ll want to do before you book is become familiar with their baggage fees and policies. This way, you can make sure you’re not hit with unexpected fees when you travel and you can plan accordingly to minimize your costs.

Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind when booking an Air New Zealand flight and planning for baggage is that their specific fees for checked baggage increase as you get closer to your scheduled departure time. In fact, it is not uncommon for baggage fees on many routes to more than double in the hours leading up to your flight. With this in mind, the key to saving on your baggage costs with Air New Zealand will be to pay for your luggage as far in advance as possible. If you are not traveling Air New Zealand, check out the United Airlines baggage fees.

Air New Zealand Checked and Carry-On Allowances

Air New Zealand is also one of many airlines where specific charges and allowances for both checked and carry-on luggage can vary based on your route and fare. As a result, the best way to find out exactly what your baggage will cost you for your trip is to contact the airline directly or check out their specific baggage policies online.

Still, there are some general guidelines for both checked and carry-on baggage that can be helpful to know as you prepare for your flight.

Checked Bag Allowances and Fees

Baggage allowances for Air New Zealand vary based on whether your flight is a domestic or international one, as well as the type of fare you book. For domestic flights, all fares except for flexidate fares are allowed one free checked bag. Flexidate fares are permitted two pieces of checked luggage.

For international flights, the following fares are permitted one piece of checked luggage:

  • seat + bag fares
  • the works fares
  • economy fares

Works Deluxe and economy fares are permitted two pieces of checked luggage, whereas business and business premier fares can check three pieces of luggage at no additional charge. Keep in mind that when flying Air New Zealand, all checked bags must weigh no more than 50 pounds and measure no greater than 62 linear inches.

Carry-On Allowances and Fees

Air New Zealand’s carry-on policies are a little more straight-forward than their checked baggage guidelines, but they can still vary based on fare. All passengers, regardless of fare, are permitted one free personal item (such as a purse or briefcase). Economy passengers are also allowed one free standard-sized carry-on bag that is not to weigh more than 15 pounds or measure greater than 46.5 linear inches.

All other fares are permitted two standard carry-on bags weighing no more than 30 pounds total (with no single bag weighing more than 22 pounds).

When traveling with carry-on baggage on Air New Zealand, personal items should be small enough to fit underneath the seat in front of you during your flight. Otherwise, you may be asked to stow personal items away in an overhead bin.

What About Infants, Strollers, and Baby Gear?

Lap infants do not require their own fare; if you plan on traveling with a lap infant, most flights will accommodate a car seat and a single stroller to be carried on at no additional charge. However, it’s a good idea to check with the airline prior to your flight. If you wish, you can also check a stroller and car seat at no additional charge with Air New Zealand.

Charges For Additional Bags and Overweight Luggage

Most flights and fares with Air New Zealand allow for anywhere from one to three checked bags, with the ability to purchase additional checked baggage on a limited basis (depending on fare and route). Specific fees for additional baggage beyond the allowance provided can vary based on your destination and the number of additional bags you’re checking.

For example, when flying domestically within New Zealand, you can expect to pay $26 for your first additional bag and $45 for your second bag. Longer-haul flights will cost more for additional baggage, ranging anywhere from $45-$117 for your first bag and $71-$143 for a second bag.

All checked bags on Air New Zealand may not weigh more than 50 pounds or measure greater than 62 linear inches (including any handles and wheels). If you’re traveling with an oversized or overweight bag, you can expect to pay an additional $180 per bag, though specific fees here can vary depending on your destination.

Saving On Air New Zealand Baggage Fees (Or Avoiding Them Altogether)

When flying with Air New Zealand, there are some practical measures you can take to save money on your baggage fees and possibly even avoid them altogether.

Get Reimbursed With Your Credit Card

Numerous travel credit cards provide baggage fee reimbursement as a perk to card holders. Check with your credit card company to see if this is something they offer and, if so, what their rules and restrictions are. More than likely, you will be instructed to pay for your baggage fees with your eligible credit card and apply for an account credit or reimbursement after your flight.

Become a Star Alliance Member

Air New Zealand participates in the popular Star Alliance program, which provides special perks to frequent travelers. If you’re a Star Alliance member, you may be entitled to free checked bags. For example, all Airports Gold, Elite, and Star Alliance Gold members are allowed one additional checked bag per ticket, in most cases. Specific restrictions may apply depending on your route, so check with the airline before you book to find out exactly what your luggage perks are.

Limit Your Luggage to Your Free Carry-Ons

Since all Air New Zealand fares allow for one free personal and one free standard carry-on, you may be able to avoid baggage fees altogether by limiting your luggage to your carry-ons. This will be easier to do if you’re taking a shorter trip. Longer trips that require more luggage may required you to check your bags, but many fares will also include at least one free checked bag. By packing wisely, you can likely avoid needing to pay for any checked bags on your trip.

Pay for Your Luggage Ahead of Time

Baggage fees for Air New Zealand flights tend to balloon as your departure time approaches, with rates being highest in the last few hours leading up to your flight. You can save on your baggage fees, then, by paying for them before you even head to the airport. You have the option to pay at the time of your booking to secure the best rates, and waiting to pay at the airport will subject you to the highest rates.

Air New Zealand Baggage Policies: Frequently Asked Questions

Below are answers to some of the most common questions travelers ask about baggage fees and policies with Air New Zealand.

How can I pre-pay for luggage with Air New Zealand?

You can and should pre-pay for baggage when flying Air New Zealand, since their baggage fees tend to increase as flight departure times draw near. You can pay for baggage over the phone before your flight by calling the airline directly or through their website. This can be done any time after you book your fare.

What if I’m traveling with a lap infant?

You won’t need to pay for a seat with a lap infant under the age of 2, and you may bring a car seat and stroller at no additional charge. These items do not count towards your carry-on allowance with Air New Zealand. On the other hand, you are also free to check these items at no charge before your flight.

How can I avoid oversized and overweight baggage fees?

All checked bags on Air New Zealand must measure no greater than 62 linear inches and no heavier than 50 pounds. Use a luggage scale to weigh your bags before you head to the airport to ensure you’re under the weight limit, and be careful to include handles and wheels when measuring for size. If your luggage is overweight by a small amount, consider moving a few items into your carry-on, provided that this will not push your carry-on over the weight limit for standard carry-ons.

What are Air New Zealand’s policies for carry-on luggage?

Speaking of carry-on luggage, all Air New Zealand passengers are allowed one free personal item and one free standard carry-on bag. If you book any fare other than a basic economy fare, you’re allowed to bring two standard carry-on bags. Weight limits for these bags can vary based on your fare, but range between 15 and 22 pounds. No carry-on bags should measure greater than 46.5 linear inches, including any wheels, handles, or accessories.