Easyjet "Hands free" cabin luggage

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  • Cedric_Statherby

    Can anyone explain the point of this new idea from Easyjet? One takes one’s hand-luggage and, er, checks it in. For a fee. And at the far end one waits for it to appear on the carousel.

    This seems to me to cost money, cost time, and deprive you during the flight of the use of the items in your hand-luggage bag. And compromises their security too – luggage going through the check-in and bag-drop system can get battered, can get lost and can get pilfered.

    I have long felt that if airlines were really trying to improve the chaos of over-sized hand luggage and over-filled overhead lockers, they should charge extra for items taken hand luggage not those put in the hold. That way people have to weigh up the speed, convenience and security of hand-luggage against the cost to them of the fee and the cost to the airline of using a scarce resource (the space in the lockers). But this requires intelligence, insight, innovation and (admittedly) some bravery from the first airline to do it, so it will never happen.


    I have often thought about your suggestion Cedric, especially when seeing passengers bringing on board clearly oversized cases… would they continue to do so if it cost them £20 per piece???


    It looks to me as if it is a way of offering a discounted price on hand luggage that is cabin compliant, in order to increase the revenue stream by persuading people to check it in.

    £4 each way is quite a reduction on a typical 20kg non cabin size bag.

    At present, two queues are formed, one for speedy boarding and then another for the rest. The ground crew comb both queues and count up to ‘x’ bags (90 on Ryanair, I don’t know how many on easy) and then they inform the rest that their cabin bag will be going in the hold for free.

    If they can monetise a certain amount of baggage that would have been checked in for free, by convincing people it will make their trip a little easier, it’s pure contribution to profit or a contribution towards the cost of hanlding checked baggage (I have no idea of what each checked bag costs to be handled).

    Tom Otley

    Yes, that’s right – it happens on pretty much every flight (well, the ones I have been on – 12+ with Easyjet this year, so far).

    Here’s the piece on the initiative,

    Easyjet launches “Hands Free” luggage option

    One man on a recent flight coming back from Europe agreed to have his bag checked for free as we queued at the gate. Then when we boarded and were about to finish boarding realised his passport was in it. That caused a bit of a delay.

    I don’t think many travellers will “take advantage” of it, but it probably costs little to try out.

    For checked bags, I used the self bag tag at Luton a few days ago. It was much quicker than the standard bag drop off (you have to have already checked in and also have your boarding pass ready). What slowed it down was people who were clearly baffled. But that’s life.


    I use EZY a lot and when they introduced this ‘service’ I was somewhat baffled as to why anyone would use it. Clearly it’s not just me that views it in this way.

    As an aside, a few weeks ago I used the self service bag drop at LGW. Normally it’s worked fine but this time I had two items of checked baggage, for which I’d prepaid. The first one went on as normal, I tagged it, and then the machine told me to put my second item on the belt. I couldn’t because the first one was still there so after waiting a short while I pushed it forward to make space for the second item, at which point it sounded as if I had unleashed all the demons from hell as alarms wailed and screeched and lights flashed. A very belligerent man in a high viz jacket (yep!) ran over and stated the bloody obvious :

    “You’ve set the alarm off.”

    I explained to him that as I was clearly too stupid to use their machines perhaps he could assist me rather than being aggressive, whereupon he was joined by a woman who said that the machines were ‘temperamental’ and often did this. I’m also temperamental, but I’m a paying passenger and thought that maybe they would test these machines properly. However, I’ve had remarkably few reasons to complain about EZY over the years.

    Tom Otley

    Me too, but my patience was tried by these self bagging devices, not just because of the machines, but also because there was no clear queuing for the machines so everyone milled around, elbows out in case they were being “queue jumped”, and then once you had tagged all your bags, no clear queue for lining up to dispose of them with an agent.

    Some queued for the latter having done the former; some queued for the latter having not done the former; some queued for the former having not satisfied the criteria for queuing (checked-in, having a boarding pass, having bags to drop off); and perhaps others queued just to speak to someone about some aspect of their bags that wasn’t obvious – how many bags could they really take on board – one, or two?
    If one, how did they become easyjet plus?
    If they bought easyjet plus now, could it be applied to this flight or only subsequent flights?
    If they were already easyjet plus, but their companions or family weren’t, could they still use the Speedy Boarding check-in line to check their bags?
    What did it mean when it said fix the baggage tag around the handle of your bag, but do not peel away the sticker?
    Did it matter that the bag was weighed in profile rather than landscape [YES! – according to the computer], and so the bag sticker was on the wrong handle? [NO].
    Was it possible to also buy duty free on the machine? And what was this hands free thing?


    Reading this I’m wondering if there are 2 Easyjets. British and European?
    I’ve never flown them but my family and friends have on many occasions from Holland and from Milan mainly.
    They never seem to have these problems. Cabin bags – often 2 for Mrs. LP and waved through. A kilo or two over when checking in, no problem, accepted without fuss.

    My daughter missed her flight, paid Euro20 at the airport to move to the next one then found Swiss had an earlier flight so booked that. Went back to EZY and told them. Asked for her Euro 20 back and they gave it to her without problem.

    My son and a friend to Heraklion last month ex MXP. Was asked is he would like to check his bag in – as it was a bit heavy, and there was no baggage charge. On the way back his pal managed to mangle his passport a bit, but they made no fuss.

    Listening to all the problems on ex UK flights and watching some of the airport documentaries I really wonder if they are they on the same airline???


    Two thoughts arise from an EZY flight I took on Sunday from AMS.

    I was in the Speedy Boarding queue with two pieces of cabin baggage, as permitted as an EZY+ cardholder. I had a small backpack and a cabin sized wheely bag. The gate agent stopped the chap in front of me and told him that his bag ‘looked too big’ to go in the cabin. It looked smaller than mine, and yet I was not challenged. I just wonder why they picked on him.

    I had a seat in row 2. By the time I boarded, all the overheads back to row 6 were full, and yet there were only 4 people at that stage in rows 1-5. As often happens, selfish (bad language self-censored) who push to the front of the queue and board first put their bags in the front row bins and then move to their seats further back. I have often asked the crew why they don’t monitor this but the usual excuse is ‘too busy’. I am going to write to EZY and suggest that the bins in Rows 1-4 are clearly marked “RESERVED FOR PASSENGERS SEATED IN ROWS 1-4 ONLY.”


    I am going to write to EZY and suggest that the bins in Rows 1-4 are clearly marked “RESERVED FOR PASSENGERS SEATED IN ROWS 1-4 ONLY.”

    Please copy in BA 🙂

    1 user thanked author for this post.


    Why stop there, I’m about to jump on my hobby horse and bore everybody again……..Resave lockers for she specific rows directly below !!

    Sick to the teeth of utterly selfish people who think it’s their right to monopolise locker space with all their worldly belongings.

    On one of my last EZY flights I had my normal , smaller than regulation rucksack.
    Found the locker above my aisle seat haphazardly filled neighbours 2 wheelies, a large handbag, a couple of carrier bags crammed with god knows what and a puffa jacket that Scott would have worn on his trek.
    When I tried to make space, the leer from the couple would have turned me to stone !
    To avoid a scene I reduced my comfort level and placed my bag under my seat!!
    Seems to me, that Ryanair are the only airline getting to grips with these self-absorbed buffoons

    3 users thanked author for this post.
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