More Restrictions on Smart Luggage From Delta

Feb 15, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Delta Airlines is tightening its restrictions on smart luggage, requiring customers to remove their lithium batteries in all instances, whether carried on, checked regularly or checked at the gate.

The airline’s addition to the rules is another step in the increasing limitations the industry is putting on smart luggage, which has built-in batteries and chargers for electronic devices and, in some cases, can even turn into miniature vehicles that allow their owners to ride rather than walk to their gates. (TPG has compiled a list of smart luggage — you can check whether yours is allowed.)

Tests have shown that lithium batteries can overheat and cause fires under certain conditions, leading to a confusing and sometimes seemingly contradictory series of advisories from the Federal Aviation Administration last year. In December, American led the way as several airlines forbade smart luggage with lithium batteries that could not be removed.

Under Delta’s additional rules, passengers who want to check a smart bag must remove its lithium-ion battery and bring it into the cabin with them (it can remain in the bag as long as it’s disconnected and removed from its working compartment). If the luggage is gate-checked, the battery goes into the cabin with the passenger before the bag can be loaded into the cargo hold. With luggage that is checked regularly, the passenger must remove and carry the lithium battery into the cabin.

As of today, American, Alaska, Southwest still allows the batteries in smart luggage to remain plugged in as long as they’re carried on; Hawaiian Airlines requires carry-on smart luggage to be turned off but doesn’t require the battery to be removed; and United hasn’t updated the safety guidelines on its website to reflect any new changes like Delta’s. Considering how swiftly all airlines followed suit after American in December, though, it seems likely they’ll also add new restrictions on carry-on and gate-checked smart luggage.

Featured photo by izusek/Getty Images

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases.
  • 2X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 2x total points on up to $1,000 in grocery store purchases per month from November 1, 2020 to April 30, 2021. Includes eligible pick-up and delivery services.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.