Your guide to Qantas' carry-on baggage allowances

Whether you're taking a quick regional hop, a longer domestic flight or even heading overseas, here's how much you can pack.

By Brandon Loo, July 9 2020
Your guide to Qantas' carry-on baggage allowances

Nobody likes waiting around baggage carousels for their luggage to arrive, which is why many business travellers master the art of flying 'carry-on only'.

When it comes to Qantas and its regional arm QantasLink, there are a few rules to master – so here's what you need to know about Qantas' carry-on baggage allowances on domestic and international flights.

Qantas carry-on baggage allowances for Dash-8 flights

While Qantas applies the same cabin baggage allowance to almost all of its domestic flights, its QantasLink Dash-8 services are the exception to that rule, so it pays to understand that exception first.

Here's what you can bring on board the Dash-8:

Class of travel Number of pieces Weight restriction Size restrictions
Economy 1x bag only 7kg max 105cm total dimensions

These restrictions stem from the smaller size of the overhead lockers aboard most of QantasLink's Dash-8 fleet.

While smaller bags may be allowed into the cabin, larger carry-on bags – typically being most with wheels – will be tagged as 'premium hand luggage' and collected from you before you board the aircraft, rather than allowed on board.

Before leaving a QantasLink flight, ensure you have collected any tagged 'premium hand luggage'.
Before leaving a QantasLink flight, ensure you have collected any tagged 'premium hand luggage'.

These won't be taken as checked luggage, but will be stored in a separate compartment that's not accessible during the flight. Upon landing, the hand luggage will be unloaded and given back to you before you enter the terminal.

Even if guests have other connecting Qantas domestic or international flights with a more generous cabin baggage policy, the airline advises passengers to pack for the Dash-8 service as it has the most restrictive allowances.

Qantas carry-on baggage allowance on domestic flights

Provided your domestic flight isn't operated by the Dash-8, you can take advantage of Qantas' rather generous cabin baggage policy, regardless of whether you're booked in business class or economy.

This policy also gives you several choices regarding how much you can pack, and in what type of bag:

Class of travel Number of pieces Weight restrictions Size restrictions
Business class and economy 1x bag 10kg max 115cm total dimensions
2x bags One piece up to 10kg, and a combined total weight of up to 14kg 105cm total dimensions per bag
1x standard bag and 1x non-rigid garment bag One piece up to 10kg, and a combined total weight of up to 14kg 105cm total dimensions for the standard bag

185cm total dimensions for the garment bag

Of course, if you have a Qantas domestic flight connecting to a Qantas international flight, then only the international allowance will apply for the whole journey – otherwise, you'd have too much cabin baggage for your onward flight.

Qantas carry-on baggage allowance on international flights

Qantas' international cabin baggage allowance in first class, business class and premium economy is the same as for all domestic travellers.

This means if you're connecting between a domestic and an international flight, you won't need to worry about following different cabin baggage policies, as the same rules will apply on both flights, as follows:

Class of travel Number of pieces Weight restrictions Size restrictions
First class

Business class

Premium economy class
1x bag 10kg max 115cm total dimensions
2x bags 1x piece up to 10kg and combined weight up to 14kg 105cm total dimensions per bag
1x bag and 1x non-rigid garment bag 1x piece up to 10kg and combined weight up to 14kg 105cm total dimensions for the bag

185cm total dimensions for the garment

However, passengers flying international economy class have a pared-back cabin baggage allowance of one 7kg bag or one garment bag.

Class of travel Number of pieces Weight restrictions Size restrictions
Economy 1x bag only 7kg max 115cm total dimensions for the bag
1x non-rigid garment bag only 7kg max 185cm total dimensions for the garment

How to measure dimensions for cabin baggage

You'll see many references to "dimensions" above, which refers to the sum of the length, width and height of your luggage, measured in centimetres.

With a tape measure (or even a ruler!), it's very easy to check the dimensions of your own bag, by measuring all three sides and adding the numbers together.

Take this Rimowa Cabin S bag, for instance. Its dimensions are 55cm + 40cm + 20cm, which equals 115cm exactly.

According to the tables above, this bag is too bag for Dash-8 services but can be brought on its own for Qantas domestic or international flights.

Also, keep in mind that the weight of the luggage itself will restrict how much you can pack, as the weight allowances per bag apply to both the bag and its contents.

In other words, if your bag must weigh 7kg or less, that means 7kg on the scale. If bringing aboard this same 4.2kg Rimowa bag, a traveller would only have 2.8kg left for their own belongings, which isn't much once you've packed a laptop, the obligatory chargers, liquids and more.

Qantas carry-on baggage allowances for connecting flights

As above, if you're connecting between two different flights, you'll generally need to pack for the most restrictive cabin baggage allowance of the two.

If there's any confusion, you can check the baggage limits on your ticket by visiting Qantas' carry-on baggage page and entering the details of your booking at the top. That page also has a calculator to see single-sector baggage allowances for Qantas flights.

General guidelines for Qantas carry-on baggage

Other than the basic rules regarding size and weight, you should also observe the following restrictions and guidelines:

  • Carry-on baggage should fit under the seat in front, or in the overhead lockers.
  • Carry-on baggage should not include any dangerous goods, unless permitted.
  • You should be capable of safely lifting your own bag into the overhead lockers.
  • Power banks and spare batteries should be packed into your carry-on bags only, not your checked luggage.
  • Bulky items (such as larger musical instruments or technical equipment) can be brought onboard as long as you have purchased an extra seat, notified Qantas at the time of booking, and the item has a handle to allow it to be secured safely.
  • On international flights, all liquids, aerosols and gels carried onboard must be 100ml or less and displayed within a clear resealable bag, except for any duty-free items sold at the airport and permitted into the cabin.
  • Travel accessories that attach to or between aircraft seats, or block access to seat rows and aisles, are prohibited. 

Frequently asked questions

How strict is Qantas with carry-on baggage?

While you may get away with having carry-on bags that are slightly overweight or oversize, Qantas does have a history of cracking down on hand luggage allowances and weighing bags at the gate. In fairness, the airline has a generous carry-on allowance, particularly for domestic flights.

Can you bring two carry-on bags with Qantas?

Yes, it's possible to bring on two cabin bags with a combined weight of 14kg and no bag greater than 10kg, for most Qantas domestic flights. The same allowance is given for premium economy, business class and first class passengers on international flights. Regional Dash-8 flights have a one-bag limit due to space restrictions.

Do Qantas frequent flyers get a bigger baggage allowance?

No. When travelling with Qantas and QantasLink, your cabin baggage allowance is determined by your booking class (business class, economy etc.) and the nature of your flight (Dash-8, other domestic, or international).

Qantas Club members, as well as Qantas Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One frequent flyers, receive no additional cabin baggage allowance. However, additional checked baggage may be available to these members.

What is not allowed in carry-on bags with Qantas?

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) maintains a list of dangerous goods that can't be brought onboard, including many types of weapons, explosives and dangerous chemicals. See Qantas' flyer on dangerous goods to see what is permitted and what needs an exemption to be brought onboard.

Brandon Loo

Based in Perth, Brandon enjoys tucking into local delicacies, discovering new cocktails, and making aeroplane food look good on camera.


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