American Airlines Eliminates Complimentary Checked Baggage For International Basic Economy Tickets
Photo Credit: Photo: American Airlines

Photo Credit: Photo: American Airlines

American Airlines Eliminates Complimentary Checked Baggage For International Basic Economy Tickets

American Airlines , baggage
Rafael Peña
Rafael Peña Jun 12, 2023

American Airlines, in a move that may leave travelers disheartened but not entirely surprised, has eliminated the inclusion of checked bags from its international basic economy tickets. Through June 6th, 2023, all tickets, regardless of fare class, were entitled to one checked bag on flights to and from Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Oceania. However, as recently revealed by The Points Guy, the airline has modified its policy, introducing a $75 first-checked bag fee. This alteration significantly increases the financial burden on travelers. Furthermore, a second checked bag will cost more than $100, while a third bag will set passengers back $200.

It’s important to note that flights within the US and those to US territories, Mexico, Canada, Central America, and South America maintain different fee structures for basic economy and remain unaffected by this recent change. American Airlines is diverging from its competitors, United and Delta, who have not yet implemented such a modification across all basic economy routes, regardless of the destination.

While Delta and United still extend the courtesy of one free checked bag on transpacific routes to Oceania, they have joined American Airlines in implementing a $75 fee for checked bags on other long-haul routes. However, in an industry with rapid change, it would not be surprising if other airlines followed suit in the future.

People check-in luggage at the airport
Photo Credit: davidpradoperucha

How Will This Affect Frequent Flyers?

The recent adjustment to American Airlines’ baggage policy does come with some exceptions and privileges for certain elite members. AAdvantage Gold members and oneworld Ruby members remain unaffected by the change. Members of both status groups will maintain the benefit of one complimentary checked bag, regardless of their ticket’s fare class. Likewise, oneworld Sapphire or AAdvantage Platinum status membership can still take advantage of two free checked bags on all routes.

However, the privileges extend even further for those with higher status within the airline’s loyalty program. Passengers with Oneworld Emerald status and AAdvantage Executive Platinum membership can carry three checked bags, even on basic economy fares. This additional allowance showcases the airline’s recognition and appreciation for its most loyal and prestigious clientele.

RELATED: Goodbye Baggage Fees: This Black Man Created A Carry-On That Converts To A Personal Bag

Destination: Mexico

Travel Noire, World Hue