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This Tiny Change Will Cause Thousands of Travel Headaches

Image via Louis Vuitton
Image via Louis Vuitton

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Finally reached that adulthood benchmark where you purchase the perfect and practical set of matching luggage? Not so fast: American, Delta and United airlines recently altered carry-on sizes by one inch. Bag widths are now only allowed to be 14 inches max, rather than the customary 15 inches, while there are 22 inch length and nine inch height maximums.

If that seems like no big deal, travel pro George Hobica, writing for USA Today, is here to tell you otherwise.

Image via

He recounts a tale of a near-missed flight thanks to his one-inch violation:

Just before actually getting to the TSA agent's podium, a red-jacketed person (who I believe was hired by American Airlines as a subcontractor but not an actual employee) insisted that I put my suitcase in a bag sizer. Keep in mind that I was flying in business class, and that I've taken this same 21-inch four-wheeled suitcase all around the world on almost every major airline and quite a few not-so-major ones.
Long story, short, the airline denied the bag because it was 15-inches wide. And what's more, even though you probably have to buy a new carry-on while your expensive non-regulation bags rot in the closet, many favorite luggage companies don't have carry-ons that comply with the new width guidelines for these three airlines. Hobica names Rimowa and Samsonite brands as no-go's. And the smallest wheeled carry-on we found on is just outside the required size at 14.6 inches wide. The majority of non-wheel bags are 14.2 inches wide. Because just when you thought flying couldn't more torturous, they spring this on you.
· Don't Get Grounded By New Carry-On Size Limits [USA Today]
· What to Wear To and From the Airport According to Celebrities [Racked]