United Airlines reveals how to stow luggage in overhead bins

With some airports and airlines still facing luggage issues, more and more passengers have resorted to travelling with just a carry-on.

But with this presents other issues – such as minimal overhead storage.

Some airlines have been making their lockers larger, however some passengers may not realise this means they have to bag their suitcases slightly differently.

In a viral TikTok shared by US carrier United Airlines, it showed viewers the “correct” way to store suitcases to help make the most of the space.

Instead of placing the suitcase in flat, it advised to turn the bag on its side, or as another airline explained in an announcement: “Overhead bins are equipped so you can put your suitcases in there upright like a taco, not flat like a hamburger.”

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Susannah Carr, a flight attendant for a major US airline, told The Wall Street Journal there was definitely a “learning curve”, especially for less-frequent travellers.

Some flight attendants rely on frequent travellers to set the standard while fellow passengers usually follow suit.

However, Susannah she said she cops funny looks from some passengers when she turns bags onto their side or urges passengers to do so.

“’It’s not going to close’, they say. ‘That’s not how bags fit in the overhead bins.’”

Given major US airlines have become aware more travellers are opting for just carry-ons, it has increased the size of the storage area to accommodate the, according to The Wall Street Journal.

For example, American Airlines has seen a 30 per cent decrease in bags checked at the gate since installing the bigger bins on more than 80 per cent of their planes.

But according to flight attendants, the new system will only work for everyone if all passengers remember there’s a new proper way to stow their carry-on after boarding.

“If you’re lucky enough to find yourself on a plane with the newer, taller bins, you can put them in wheels first, but on their side,” Heather Poole, a longtime flight attendant and author of the book Cruising ATTitude, previously told Travel + Leisure.

Meanwhile, if you do need assistance storing your carry-on, don’t rely on a flight attendant to help.

According to US flight attendant Cierra, none of the crew get paid while passengers are boarding.

“We actually don’t start to get paid until the moment that aeroplane door shuts and the handbrake gets lifted,” she said in a viral TikTok.

“On top of that, if it’s because you’re having trouble lifting it, you can easily get your packed [luggage] checked at the gate for free.”

While the rules vary for different airlines, some can have policies preventing flight attendants from lifting passengers’ suitcases, according to travel brand Matador Network.

Flight attendant Jamela Hardwick told Insider why she won’t help passengers with their luggage.

She explained that it not only comes down to pay, but if they get injured while performing the act, they’re not covered. “We do not get paid until the boarding door is closed,” she said. “If we get hurt while putting that bag in the overhead bin, we do not get to write it off as an on-job injury.

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