We’ve all seen it happen. A passenger lumbers down the aisle with enormous carry-on in tow. When they get to their seat (or where there is overhead space) they pause, grab the handle, and heave the bag to get it up into the bin. Maybe it gets part of the way in, and if they just push hard enough it will surely fit. Sometimes it just takes a slightly different angle, or to shift a few inches. But often those of us below can tell that bag will never fit. Or maybe it’s someone on the petite side, who can’t lift their bag high enough to fit into the bin. They stand on their toes and reach for all they’re worth, but it won’t quite get there.
Either way, I have seen countless individuals try and fail to get their carry-on into the overhead bin. Sometimes a kind neighbor will help with that extra push needed. But if not, what do they do next? Call for the flight attendant. If they’re lucky, the flight attendant will help them maneuver it in. It’s not actually part of their job though. In fact, I’ve heard of insurance denying claims from injuries flight attendants have gotten from helping passengers with their bags, for this very reason.
My rule of thumb is this: if you can’t lift your bag, don’t carry it on. When I was pregnant, eventually I couldn’t lift my heavy bag. As much as it sucked, I went ahead and started checking it. It may not be especially fair to shorter people, I know. But you can’t always count on a kind neighbor or a flight attendant to help. Whether you pack fewer items, a smaller bag that fits under the seat in front of you, or check your bag, make sure you are rollaboard self sufficient.
Readers, do you agree? Or should people expect those around them to help?