Airlines & Airports - 10 min read

Spirit Airlines Carry-On Rules (Exact Dimensions, Weight & Fees)

Alexis Musgrave

Alexis Musgrave, Updated October 17, 2022

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First-time flyers may be nervous about learning the guidelines for air travel, it can be a lot to remember! Spirit Airlines is one of the budget airlines that offer often the lowest prices of any available airline. This company has pretty standard luggage regulations for checked, carry-on, and personal bags!

Spirit Airlines carry-on bags must not exceed the dimensions of 22″ x 14″ x 9″ or 45 linear inches. The carry-on bag cost $40 to be brought on board, but personal items are free of charge. Your carry-on must weigh less than 50 pounds. You are allowed one personal item, such as a purse or backpack, and one carry-on item per person.

The major difference between Spirit Airlines and others is their cheap ticket prices but steep baggage fees. Both a checked bag and a carry-on bag are roughly the same price to bring with Spirit. But you are still able to bring your personal bag along for free.

What Are Spirits’ Baggage Restrictions?

For carry-on luggage on Spirit Airlines, each passenger must pay approximately $40 to bring their carry-on on the plane. Your carry-on time must not exceed 45 linear inches, which includes the handle and wheels. You are allowed a free personal item with Spirit! The personal item must be small enough to fit underneath the seat in front of you. This includes backpacks, purses, and other small bags.

For those looking to check their bags, there are certain fees that increase with the number of bags checked. Generally speaking, checking one bag under 45 kilograms will cost about $40. If your luggage is overweight or oversize, there will be variable fees per bag. These fees depend both on weight and size categories. There are other prices for exception luggage.

Spirit has specific rules, restrictions, and fees for exception luggage as opposed to normal luggage. If you want to check your bicycle onto a Spirit plane it will be about $75 each way. You can also check up to two surfboards per bag for about $100 each way. But if you are bringing golf clubs or skis, the price will be the same as checked baggage. However, you may have to pay overweight fees.

Overall, the guidelines for Spirit Airlines luggage are standard for the industry. If you have special items like large luggage, golf clubs, or a wheelchair there will be fees to check those onto the plane. The biggest downside is the heavy price to bring on a carry-on. The stiff fee for the carry-on item may seem inconvenient, but it is all to keep overall ticket prices low.

What Are The Size Limitations For Spirit?

Most airlines are quite strict with the size limitations of carry-on bags, and Spirit Airlines is no different. Carry-on baggage must be no bigger than 56 x 46 x 25 cm, which includes the handles and wheels. Since the planes aren’t spacious, available room is limited and there is not space for bags bigger than this.

In terms of your personal item, it must be no bigger than 45 x 35 x 20 cm. This is very important, as you will not be allowed to keep your personal item with you if it does not adhere to these dimensions. The item must fit under the seat in front of you. Meaning it is not allowed to be much bigger than a standard backpack.

What Are The Weight Limitations For Spirit?

Weight is not the most regulated measurement for carry-on bags. Generally, carry-ons are not supposed to exceed 50 lbs. But for those who pack the usual clothes and toiletries, it is unlikely to reach that limit. You will rarely run into scales to measure the weight of the carry-on as the dimensions are much more important.

As for checked baggage, your suitcase must not weigh more than 45 kilograms or 50 pounds. If your bag is over this weight you will have to pay at least an extra $35 at the counter. The more overweight the bag is the more fees will apply. This fee increases if you get significantly over this limit, but they will still carry it for you. If you have special baggage you want to fly with, such as a bike or golf clubs, those are regulated more on size than weight.

How Much Does Spirit Charge For a Carry-On?

The biggest downside to traveling with Spirit is their carry-on fees. The tickets are often time incredibly affordable, but the money is made up by the need to bring your personal belongings with you! In order to bring a carry-on with you on a Spirit flight, you will need to pay about $40.

The reason for this cost is to keep overall ticket prices low for others. It is easy to avoid paying for a carry-on if you are taking a short trip. Or you can get creative and pack your clothes into a small personal item. But most travelers find it easier to just pay the fee.

It is good to note that $40 is also the fee for a checked bag! If you do not like placing your luggage in the overhead bin, you can also check a carry-on-sized bag for the same price!

How Many Carry-Ons Can I bring?

For those who elect to pay the carry-on fee with Spirit Airlines, you are only allowed to bring on a single carry-on item with you onto the plane. Never plan to bring more than one carry-on item per passenger. This is because of the very limited space on the plane in addition to the general safety of passengers. Too many carry-ons stuffed into the overhead bins on the plane could cause them to suddenly open during the flight and fall onto the heads of other passengers.

If you don’t want to pay extra, you are still allowed to bring a personal item on the plane. The only thing to consider is that your personal item must be small enough to fit underneath the seat in front of you. This does mean the personal item can not be another small suitcase. This includes small items such as backpacks, purses, pillows, laptop bags, or anything else you would like to have with you in your seat.

Beyond the carry-on item and personal item, you will not be allowed to bring anything else onto the plane. If you have special items like strollers or wheelchairs, those will need to be checked. But you can often check them at the gate rather than at the ticket counter so you can use them at the airport. Be sure to communicate at the ticket counter or review the Spirit website to understand these special cases better.

What Is Allowed In a Carry-On For Spirit?

Like most airlines, Spirit outlines what you are not allowed to bring on your carry-on, rather than what you can. You can pretty much pack anything you would like into your carry-on. As long as you do not have any dangerous explosives, lighters, drugs, weapons, or flammable items.

However, accidents can happen! Some travelers forget there are possible dangers in their bags. Simple items like a screwdriver, corkscrew, mini hairspray bottle, or lithium batteries in your carry-on will get flagged at TSA and be confiscated. These honest mistakes will not get you in trouble with TSA or your flight!

Drugs such as tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, or e-cigarettes are not allowed in your carry-on. Some lesser-known items you can not bring are pepper spray, hoverboards, lithium batteries, bleach, or any form of lighters. Other more obvious items such as firearms and explosives will not make it through TSA and onto a Spirit Airlines flight.

Typically, the carry-on is filled with clothes and toiletries to be used at the final destination. Some travelers fill their carry-on with personal entertainment for flights or equipment for a job they choose to bring with them. As long as it is nothing dangerous, Spirit Airlines will not micromanage what you place in your carry-on luggage.

Can I Bring a Purse And a Backpack On Spirit?

Generally speaking, you can absolutely bring a purse or backpack along with you onto your Spirit flight! These items tend to qualify as your personal item, so you could have them at your feet during the flight. So long as it is not too large that the bag will not fit under the seat, you can certainly bring these items along with you.

You will run into problems if your backpack or purse is too large to fit under the seat in front of you. A typical school backpack fits perfectly in this space. But if you are looking to bring an extremely large backpack, such as one made for long hiking trips, that will have to be checked.

Even larger than average backpacks and purses as be brought as a personal item, but if it gets too large you could run into some problems. However, if you are hoping to bring a traditionally sized purse or backpack with you on your Spirit plane, you will have no issues.

Can a Duffle Bag Count As a Personal Item On Spirit?

Generally, a duffel bag can count as a personal item or a carry-on depending on the size. If your duffel bag is under 18 x 14 x 8 it would be considered to be a personal item on Spirit Airlines. On a spirit flight, it does not matter what variety of personal items you have, it simply must fit underneath the seat in front of you.

If you have a medium-sized duffle bag that exceeds these measurements, you can still bring it on a Spirit plane as your carry-on. As long as it can fit within the measurement containers at the airport, you can bring it on the plane. Just be wary if the duffel bag is too large, or else you will have to check the bag!

Does a Pillow Count As a Personal Item on Spirit?

Simply speaking, bringing a large pillow with you on a Spirit flight will count as your personal item. However, you can bring a neck pillow or a compact pillow that can fit in a backpack as well as a personal item on your flight. The size of the pillow is the most important thing to consider, as a large pillow will limit if you can bring a bag with you.

The most important thing to know about personal items on Spirit Airlines is the size. As long as your personal item can fit underneath the seat in front of you then you will not run into trouble. But if you bring a large backpack and pillow that can not fit under the seat you could face conflict with the airline.

The best way to bring a pillow with you is to have a traditional neck pillow, as it is convenient and compact for the flight! But if you are taking a long or overseas flight, there are other options to get online! You can find a large variety of blow-up or expandable pillows meant to keep you comfortable during a flight. best of all, These pillows do not take up a lot of space!

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