Air Canada baggage fees and policies

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It’s common knowledge among points and miles enthusiasts that Air Canada’s Aeroplan is one of the best airline rewards programs in the business. You can transfer both Chase and Amex to Aeroplan. And the program has and other valuable partners, like United and Lufthansa. 

In addition to earning easy and flexible points and miles, Air Canada has competitive perks for all travelers, from family-friendly policies to no fuel surcharges. In this article, we’ve broken down another great perk available to all travelers: Air Canada’s baggage fees and policies.

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Air Canada baggage policies

With a free personal item, carry-on bag, and in some cases, even a checked bag, Air Canada has got your baggage needs covered.

Carry on bags

On Air Canada, all passengers get one free personal item and one free carry-on bag to take on board. Personal items are things like backpacks and purses that you can easily carry and that typically fit under the seat in front of you. Carry-on bags are bigger, like a duffle bag, and they are stored in the overhead compartments of the plane. 

Your personal item must be 17” x 13” x 6” (43 x 33 x 16 cm) or smaller, including any wheels or handles. Carry-on bags must be 21.5” x 15.5” x 9” (55 x 40 x 23 cm) or smaller, including any wheels or handles. There are no weight restrictions for either of these items, but make sure you can carry and lift both!

For passengers flying with an infant on their lap, an additional carry-on bag is allowed for the child. Small collapsible strollers also count as an additional carry-on item! 

Checked bags

Air Canada’s checked baggage fees and policies can be a bit more confusing, because they vary slightly based on destination and class. For specifics about your flight, check out the Air Canada checked baggage calculator to determine your allowance. But, there are a few rules of thumb to get you started. 

Generally, passengers flying in premium economy or business class on any Air Canada flight will get two checked bags free. The only fare type that does not normally include any free checked bags is economy class, where Air Canada’s baggage fees vary based on the flight (although one free checked bag is included for economy passengers flying within the domestic U.S., only). 

All checked bags must weigh under 50 lbs (23kg) and be smaller than 62” (158 cm) total when adding together maximum length, width and height of the bag. 

Checked baggage fees

For those with standard economy tickets on Air Canada, there will be checked baggage fees in most cases. The only time an economy passenger has one free checked bag on Air Canada is when flying on the airline within the domestic United States. Additional bags after the initial free one cost $70 and $225, respectively. For any other flight, baggage fees for economy vary based on destination and bag number.

Economy baggage fees flying within domestic Canada:

  • First bag: $30
  • Second bag: $50
  • Third + bags: $100

Economy baggage fees flying between the U.S. and Canada:

  • First bag: $30
  • Second bag: $50
  • Third + bags: $100

Economy baggage fees flying between the U.S. and Mexico:

  • First bag: $30
  • Second bag: $50
  • Third + bags: $225


Economy baggage fees flying between Canada and Europe:

  • First bag: $70
  • Second bag: $100
  • Third + bags: $225

Economy baggage fees flying between the U.S. and Europe:

  • First bag: $70
  • Second bag: $100
  • Third + bags: $225

Excess baggage fees

If your bag is heavier than 50 lbs (23kg) or larger than 62” (158 cm), Air Canada’s baggage fees increase. Overweight bags are 50 lbs – 70 lbs (23 kg -32 kg) and oversized bags are 63” – 115” (160 cm 292 cm). Any bags heavier or larger than those dimensions will not be accepted. 

In the case of excess baggage fees, you have to pay regardless of your fare and class. But, how much you pay depends on your destination. If your bag is both oversized and overweight, you only need to pay the fee one time. 

Excess baggage fees flying within Canada:

  • $105 – $115 per bag. 

Excess baggage fees flying between the U.S. and Canada:

  • $100-$105 per bag.

Excess baggage fees flying between the U.S. and Mexico/Costa Rica/Carribean/Bermuda:

  • $100-$118 for the first oversized/overweight bag.
  • $225-$265.50 for any additional oversized/overweight bags.

Excess baggage fees flying between Canada and other international destinations:

  • $100-$118 for the first oversized/overweight bag.
  • $225-$265.50 for any additional oversized/overweight bags.

How to avoid Air Canada checked baggage fees

Even though these Air Canada’s baggage fees can seem expensive and scary, it’s actually easy to avoid the fees altogether. 

One way to avoid the baggage fees is to purchase a premium economy or business class ticket if you plan on checking any bags. Economy fares are fine if you’re only carrying on, but the amount you pay extra for a higher class can oftentimes pay for itself once you take into account checked bag fees. 

Travelers can also avoid fees by purchasing latitude fares, which are Air Canada’s flexible travel date tickets that include two free checked bags. Additionally, if you find flex and comfort fares, there’s normally one free checked bag included in that price too. 

And don’t forget, you can always use a card that reimburses airline incidental fees like The Platinum Card® from American Express, which comes with an up to $200 airline fee credit annually.

Lastly, avoid excess baggage fares by weighing and measuring your luggage ahead of time. Remember, for premium economy and business class, two free checked bags are included. If you find your bag might be a little too big, split it into two checked bags to avoid any fees!

Bottom line

With a guaranteed free personal item and carry-on item for passengers in all classes, Air Canada comes out of the gate with great baggage policies. Although checked baggage allowance is determined by fare, destination, and frequent flyer status, it’s easier than not to score two free checked bags on Air Canada. By booking your next flight with Air Canada, you’ll be saving big on baggage fees!

Alexandra Maloney is a contributor to Million Mile Secrets, she covers topics on points and miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels, and general travel.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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