SOURCE: United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)

May 07, 2008 15:28 ET

Sorting the New Airline Baggage Rules: USTOA and TravelSmith Offer Help

Changes Reflected on Updated Web Chart

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - May 7, 2008) - May marked the beginning of stricter baggage rules on many U.S. domestic airlines. The US Tour Operators Association has updated its Baggage Allowance Table to reflect the more stringent rules on checked baggage for U.S. domestic airlines, new Transportation Security Administration regulations regarding lithium batteries, and more relaxed carry-on rules for passengers flying into some UK airports. The updated table can be found at http://www.ustoa.com/consumernews/airlinebaggage.cfm.

Located in the USTOA web site's "Smart Travel Planning" section, The Airline Baggage and Security Guideline page provides an online chart with baggage allowances for both checked and carry-on luggage for various parts of the world.

The updated chart reflects that:

--  As of May 5 most domestic U.S. flights only allow one free checked
    piece with maximum linear measurements (height+width+depth) of 62 inches
    apiece.
--  As of January 1, 2008 some airports in the UK have relaxed their
    baggage carry-on rules, and -- as in most parts of the world -- allow a
    personal item and an additional small bag.
--  Depending on the airline and route, prices for overweight or extra
    bags range from $25 to $150.
    

Luggage that meets the guidelines

To illustrate the various types of luggage and carry-ons meeting the above requirements TravelSmith has prepared a complementary chart: www.travelsmith.com/luggagerules. Packing lists and travel advice are also available at the TravelSmith site or by calling one of TravelSmith's expert outfitters at 1-800-950-1600.

Security Guidelines

A section on the USTOA Airline Baggage Allowance web page lists U.S. Transportation Security Administration guidelines for flights departing the U.S. and general information on flights originating at non-U.S. airports.

Travelers can also find website links to the U.S. TSA as well as to representative airline sites on the USTOA Baggage Allowance page. "Baggage allowance and security regulations can change without notice, so it's always best to check with the airline you are flying regarding the latest requirements," advises Bob Whitley, USTOA president.

More information on USTOA is available at www.ustoa.com or www.ustoa.travel. Or phone 1-800-GO-USTOA (468-7862).

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