Qantas is increasing the per-bag weight limit for cabin bags on domestic flights, with passengers now able to bring a carry-on bag as heavy as 10kg.
The new rules take effect from Monday 25 March and provide additional flexibility for travellers who have felt stymied by the current cap of 7kg per bag.
The total cabin baggage per passenger will remain pegged at 14kg across two standard-sized bags, plus a small ‘personal item’ bag such as a satchel or slim briefcase.
However, the maximum weight of a single cabin bag increases from 7kg to 10kg – with the remaining 4kg available for a second bag if need be.
Qantas says the decision follows trials which included weighing passengers' carry-on bags at the boarding gate.
This found that while nine out of ten travellers had under 10kg of cabin baggage in total, around 40% of those had a bag weighing between 7kg and 10kg.
"We’ve had feedback from our frequent flyers who said they can easily keep within the 14kg limit but would like flexibility in how they use their cabin baggage allowance," remarks Qantas Domestic CEO Andrew David, who cites that most passengers on short business trips and weekends away "only travel with one carry-on bag plus a small personal item."
"Customers will now have more choice how they use their 14kg carry on allowance, by having one bag that weighs up to 10kg."
The airline is hoping for a best-case scenario which will see passengers able to bring 10kg in a single cabin-bag rather than split their load across two bags, which will in turn free up space in the aircraft's overhead luggage bins.
The new cabin baggage policy applies to all Qantas passengers regardless of cabin or frequent flyer status, although the revised rules don't extend to QantasLink's Bombardier Dash 8 turboprop aircraft, where the 7kg/bag limit remains in effect.