The ‘correct’ way to store your carry-on baggage isn’t what you think

Think you know how to store your bag? Think again. There is a much more efficient way to do this – one that airlines really like you to know about...


It’s easy to overlook travel. From the safety offer (I prefer death) to the directive to “keep seat belts on until the sign goes off” on landing, there are many things we park too.

But storing your luggage in overhead bins is very simple. You may think that there is something you cannot get it wrong. Well, you obviously think wrong because United Airlines has come up with a viral video showing you the right way to do it. And if all airlines have the same box size as United in this video, I’m doing it wrong all the time.

WATCH: The ‘correct’ way to store carry-on bags in overhead bins

Enter: video. Lip-sync (as is usual on TikTok) to a weird soundtrack that talks about moving from side to side versus up and down, the clip shows you how you should put your bags in the upper locker. and how is that? With the narrow side down and wheels first. It also displays a sign inside the boxes that shows you how to place the holster.

“Buff: You’re on one of our new, larger overhead box planes.”

United Airlines

This is also only possible, as it should be noted, with boxes of certain sizes. Something many social media users have noticed. The TikTok brigade also pointed out that if you’re short you probably don’t care how you put your bag in the upper locker (as long as you can get it there) and you won’t be able to see the tag anyway.

Image credit: Your canoe paddle

“Viewpoint…. you are not tall enough to see the mark.”

TikTok user Casey Scamilla

One wrote: “Some of us are too short to see it.” Another added, “Respectfully I’m 4’11. If I throw the bag and it falls in the trash and not my head, that’s a win for me. I’m sitting down.”

Related: The “neck pillow” travel hack everyone should know

A short person praised the video, however, writing: “As a short person, I’m glad I saw this bc, I can never see it inside those places where the instruction label is.”

For planes with smaller overhead bins, you should still never lay your bag lengthwise, but you will likely have to lay it flat rather than on its side.

As told by Heather Paul, a longtime flight attendant Travel and Leisure: “Large items carried by hand are put in the wheels of the upper cabinets first. Jackets and coats are placed on top of the bag. Small bags are placed under the seat.”

“If you’re lucky enough to find yourself on a plane with the newer and longer chests, you can put them in the wheels first, but along with them.”

Heather Paul

You learn something new every day.
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