Public Service Announcement: Bulky Items Often Can’t Be Checked As Part Of Your Baggage Allowance (And Might Require A Seat)

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I witnessed an interesting situation this week when passengers who were checking in next to me for an Iberia flight to Madrid tried to check in their Star Wars Figure which actually had the size of a child.

It wasn’t possible to check in the item as part of the regular baggage allowance and required to be dropped off as bulky baggage or they were offered to purchase an extra seat for the figure.

Even though Iberia is quite generous with their baggage policy especially for status customers and in Business Class (I was displayed an allowance of 4 bags a 23KG for my MAD-PVG flight) that doesn’t mean you can check in items that exceed a certain limitation of dimensions.

You can access Iberia’s baggage policy here.

In you would like to transport equipment that is bigger than our permitted size ( 158cm height+width+length) , please contact us ahead of time to confirm whether it can fly with you on the same airplane.

Musical instruments, audio/visual equipment, industrial parts, etc. that weigh between 32 and 45 kg* are treated as an additional piece of baggage with extra charges.

Not sure what exactly the problem was here because the figure certainly wasn’t taller than 1,58cm but I didn’t follow their conversation too closely. The passengers did allow me to take the picture though as I though it looks… well, interesting.


Checked baggage allowance varies greatly between carriers and one should better be on their toes when carrying items that are out of the ordinary such as this special passenger. It’s not uncommon for people to book an extra seat for bulky items like music instruments which they don’t want to check into the cargo hold.

Purchasing an extra seat on this flight wouldn’t have been expensive at all. It was on sale for 67 Euro not too long ago. Of course if you have a connection that’s a different matter.