A video has gone viral on TikTok that purports to show how to beat paying baggage fees by stuffing clothes inside a pillowcase. This is not a travel hack I would rest on…
Pillow Flies Free? It Depends.
The premise of the video, which has racked up over 17 million views, is simple. Pillows generally don’t count toward your carry-on or personal item limit, so filling a pillow case with clothing or other items is a smart “hack” to beat extra baggage charges.
That’s a dangerous premise to rest on, though. I’ve looked through the carry-on rules of several airlines inside and outside the United States and cannot find any reference that a pillow would not count as a personal item, particularly one as large as in the video above.
I certainly stipulate that in most cases this trick probably would work…but isn’t that true for any bag? It is so rare, at least in my experience, to see carriers actually strictly enforce their carry-on limit.
The 11-second video has thus far attracted more than 7,000 comments.
When one person asked, “Anyone checked that this actually works?” the video creator responded that it has worked seven times thus far.
I don’t doubt that. However, I think stuffing socks and underwear into a neck pillow is quite a different matter than trying to stuff a ski parka into an oversized pillow case.
Just be prepared, if you use this trick, to pay up if you get “caught” with the extra item, because it technically isn’t a loophole you can rely on.
While it is a common sight to see travelers with a pillow around their neck or in their arm along with their carry-on item and personal item, this is not a policy to bank on in order to avoid baggage fees. But bravo for the clever video.
I’m curious, how many of you have used a pillow case to skirt carry-on limits?