Emirates Airlines is based in Dubai and is the largest airline in the Middle East, offering flights to more than 150 destinations across six of the globe’s continents. In terms of passengers carried, it is also the fourth-largest airline in the world. If you’ll be doing any international travel in the near future, there’s a good chance you’re looking at flights with Emirates Airlines.
Before you book, though, you should familiarize yourself with the airline’s specific policies and fees as they relate to both checked and carry-on baggage. This will help you better pack and prepare for your trip while also avoiding any unpleasant surprises at the airline check-in counter or gate.
While Emirates Airlines is relatively generous with their baggage allowances, the way they are presented can be somewhat confusing. A lot of this confusion is based on the fact that so many of their fees and policies are based on fare type and destination. Still, this overview can be helpful as you plan for your trip, providing you with the basics you need to know about baggage policies when flying Emirates Airlines.
Emirates Airlines Checked and Carry-On Allowances
Emirates Airlines has rather generous carry-on allowances, though it is worth noting that they refer to standard carry-ons as “handbags.” When it comes to checked baggage, fees and allowances can vary greatly depending on the type of fare you book and where you’re flying.
Checked Bag Allowances and Fees
All fare types on Emirates Airlines include at least some checked baggage at no additional charge, but specific allowances and fees can vary. Your best bet at determining your exact baggage costs for an upcoming flight is to use Emirates Airlines’ online baggage calculator tool. This will tell you how many checked bags your fare is permitted, as well as what your fees would be to purchase additional checked baggage.
For most routes, you can expect to receive one free checked bag weighing no more than 50 pounds. For Business and First-Class fares, two checked bags are typically included, with weight limits at 70 pounds per bag.
It is important to note, however, that weight limits can vary a bit based on your route and fare. For flights outside of the Americas, for example, weight limits may be smaller (about 44 pounds for Special fares). Again, this is where it will be helpful to check with the Emirates Airlines online baggage calculator tool prior to your flight to avoid confusion. You can also contact the airline directly for further guidance if you’re confused by your checked bag allowances or fees.
Carry-On Allowances and Fees
Compared to checked baggage fees with Emirates Airlines, carry-on allowances are a little more straight-forward—but still a bit more complex than most airlines. For Economy fares, passengers are permitted one piece of carry-on luggage not to exceed 22″ x 15″ x 8″ and weighing no more than 15 pounds. This may include anything from a handbag to a laptop bag or other small suitcase.
For Business and First-Class fares, the carry-on allowance is extended to two pieces of luggage. This includes a smaller item, such as a briefcase not measuring more than 18″ x 14″ x 8″ and an additional item measuring no greater than 22″ x 15″ x 8″. The weight limit on each piece of carry-on luggage is 15 pounds. If you need the complete size guide, check out our carry-on luggage size guide.
If any of your carry-on bags are heavier than 15 pounds or measure larger than the allotted size, you will be required to check these bags at the gate and pay any applicable fees. When measuring your carry-on luggage, make sure that you’re including any handles, wheels, or other accessories for an accurate measurement.
What About Infants, Strollers, and Baby Gear?
If you’re traveling with an infant, you are permitted to bring a collapsible stroller or cot onto the plane with you at no charge, provided that there is enough room. If not, you will need to check this item, but you won’t pay extra to do so. If you’ll be traveling with a stroller, you should check this (for free) at the airport check-in counter; Emirates Airlines offers complimentary strollers that you can use to travel with your infant throughout the airport.
Charges For Additional Bags and Overweight/Oversized Luggage
Weight limits on checked bags with Emirates Airlines can vary based on your fare and route. For most Economy Fares, you will need to keep the weight of each checked bag to 50 pounds or fewer. Business and First-Class passengers may have checked bags weighing up to 70 pounds each. For some flights, such as those outside of the Americas, weight limits may be more limited.
For flights within the Americas, checked bags should not exceed 59 linear inches for a single bag. If you’ll be checking more than two pieces of luggage, total linear dimensions of your bags should not exceed 118 inches combined. Larger bags may be subject to oversized baggage fees.
For flights outside of the Americas, linear dimensions are the same, but any oversized bags will need to be sent as freight or cargo. When measuring your bags to check their linear size, be sure to include wheels, handles, and any other accessories. This will provide you with the most accurate measurement.
Oversize and overweight baggage fees can vary depending on your route. However, you can expect to spend anywhere from $75 to $250 for an overweight/oversized bag within your baggage allowance and anywhere from $275 to $325 in fees for bags outside of your included allowance.
Saving On Emirates Airlines Baggage Fees (Or Avoiding Them Altogether)
Who wants to spend more than they need to on baggage fees when flying with any airline? These tips are specific to Emirates Airlines and may help you save on your baggage fees or possibly even avoid them altogether.
Get Reimbursed By Your Credit Card
These days, more credit card companies are beginning to offer baggage fee reimbursement as a perk for card-holders. Chase and Capital One are two examples of credit card companies that offer these perks on some cards. Check with your credit card company to see if they offer any type of account credit/reimbursement for applicable baggage fees. This could save you hundreds of dollars on your next flight
Become an Emirates Skywards Member
If you do a lot of flying with Emirates Airlines, look into their frequent flyer program. Known as Emirates Skywards, being a member of this program can help you earn free baggage. Specific allowances and perks can vary depending on your membership tier. For example, Silver Skywards members may be entitled to an additional 26 pounds of weight allowance for checked bags. Gold members, on the other hand, may receive up to an additional 44 pounds.
Book the Appropriate Fare for Your Baggage Needs
Since all fare types with Emirates Airlines include at least some checked baggage, booking the right fare can save you money. If you know how many bags you’ll need to bring and have a general idea of what type of weight allowance best suits your needs, you can save money by simply booking the right fare.
Limit Your Luggage to Carry-On Items
Depending on where you’re traveling and how long you’ll be gone, you might be able to get away with packing everything you need in your carry-on luggage. This is ideal for shorter trips and can not only save you money, but allow you to bypass the wait at baggage claim after your flight lands.
Emirates Airlines Baggage Policies: Frequently Asked Questions
Below are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about baggage policies and fees with Emirates Airlines.
How can I get the most accurate estimate of my baggage fees with Emirates Airlines?
Because Emirates Airlines allowances and baggage fees can vary based on fare and route, it’s a good idea to use their online baggage calculator tool to get the best idea of your allowances and any additional costs. You can also reach out to the airline directly for assistance in understanding baggage policies as they apply to your specific flight. In addition you can check a similar airline policy to see if it may fit your question needs. For example, the Delta Airlines baggage fee policy is similar but not the same as Emirates.
How can I avoid overweight and oversized baggage charges?
The best way to avoid these fees is to be familiar with the weight and size limits for your fare and route. From there, take time to both measure and weigh your bag before your flight. If your bag is overweight, consider removing some items or moving them into your carry-on bag if you have additional weight to spare. When measuring for size, don’t forget to include handles, wheels, and any other accessories on your bag.
Can I pre-pay for my baggage with Emirates Airlines?
Yes, you can pre-pay for luggage at the time of booking or any time leading up to your flight by using the Emirates Airlines website or mobile app. Doing so won’t save you any money, but it will save you the time and hassle once you arrive at the airport for your flight.