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AA Slashes Oversized-Bag Fees By 80% for Some Sports Equipment, Music Gear

May 21, 2019
3 min read
AA Slashes Oversized-Bag Fees By 80% for Some Sports Equipment, Music Gear
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Skiers, surfers and musicians rejoice: American Airlines just made it a lot cheaper to check certain sports equipment and musical instruments. Effective today, May 21, American Airlines will treat oversized luggage the same as standard baggage for many sports and mcusic equipment.

This change drastically cuts the cost to check items such as surfboards, skies and snowboards -- which cost $150 to check prior to today. This change matches -- and surpasses -- a move that United made in October 2018 to treat surfboards, wakeboards and paddleboards as standard checked bags for flights that start or end in California. Delta still charges $150 for surfboards and other sports equipment.

Note that the sports equipment or musical instruments will still need to weigh less than 50 lbs and the length, width and height must measure less than 126 inches (320 cm). If the equipment meets the requirements, standard bag fees starting at $30 per bag apply. The $150 fee will still apply if the bag weighs between 51-70 lbs -- except for first and business class passengers, Executive Platinum and oneworld Emerald members who can check bags up to 70 lbs at no extra cost.

There are some sports equipment which require "special handling requirements" and will continue to incur a $150 fee such as antlers, hang gliders, scuba tanks and kite/windsurfing items.

https://player.vimeo.com/video/337382317

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Specific equipment that American Airlines now lists as costing the same as standard checked bag fees includes:

  • Archery
  • Baseball bats
  • Bicycles
  • Bowling
  • Camping equipment
  • Curling equipment
  • Fencing equipment
  • Fishing
  • Golf clubs
  • Hockey, cricket and lacrosse equipment
  • Javelin and pole vault
  • Oars and paddles
  • Parachutes
  • Scuba gear without tanks
  • Shooting equipment
  • Skateboards
  • Skies and snowboards
  • Watersports boards
  • Tennis, badminton, squash or raquetball

This is even more welcome news to American Airlines elites, Oneworld elites and credit card holders that can now use their baggage allowance toward checking sports equipment and musical instruments for free. And, as noted above, Executive Platinum and oneworld Emerald elites get waived overweight bag fees, meaning they can check sporting equipment or musical instrument bags up to 70 lbs at no extra cost.

Cards that offer a free checked bag on domestic itineraries includes:

  • Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®
  • CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®
  • Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®
  • Barclays AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite Mastercard

The information for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum card and CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Featured image by UIG via Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
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The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

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  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023