a plane on the tarmac

If you’re a Ryanair passenger who’s long been waiting for the other shoe to drop, the January 15th policy landing was surprisingly soft. The truth is: there are pluses and minuses to the new Ryanair carry on bag policies. Things will be different, but not necessarily worse. Here’s everything you need to know about the new policy, and how it will affect your next Ryanair flight.

a plane on the tarmac

Allowance Is The Same

The greatest misconception of the new policy is that passengers carry on allowance has changed. It has not. Passengers may still bring one full sized carry on and one small personal item. What’s a personal item, you might ask? Many passengers long expected Ryanair to restrict this allowance, the way US carriers such as Delta, American and United have have – but they have not. A fare as low as €5 will still get you a full sized carry on and personal item. Not bad.

The Only Change

The only change is how your bags are dealt with. Overhead bins are a constant issue, and time wasted trying to cram bags into them, or subsequently check them into the cargo hold causes flight delays. Ryanair will now force all customers who DO NOT have priority boarding to gate check their bag. In other words, your larger bag will be placed (for free) under the plane.

a plane on the runway at nightThe Problem

Frequent travelers have particular disdain for checked luggage. No one likes standing around waiting for luggage. If you have not paid for Ryanair priority boarding, by selecting a seat, you’ll be forced to wait at baggage claim, for your bag to be returned. Unless of course, you pony up. A first row seat with unlimited legroom can be secured for €20 one way, and includes priority boarding.


Travelers looking for the best bargains will still be able to navigate Europe with a full sized carry on. Ryanair did not stoop to the diabolic levels of US airlines, introducing fares without full sized carry on baggage. Passengers who do not pay to select seats will waste time upon landing,  but can expect more on time arrivals. It’s really not so bad.

How will this new policy affect your travel decisions?

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. The only problem I have with this change of policy is that they have increased the price of premium seats without telling anyone.
    Premium seat used to include priority boarding, now it doesn’t.
    So you pay £5 which used to be included in the approx £20 reserved seat. Making the reserved seat approx 25% more expensive. Quite underhanded really.

  2. People must focus in what is real important and what Ryanair gave us ( in Europe ) and the all the doors openned ! It´s cheaper to travel for almost any coutry in Europe than a bus or train ticket inside our own country.
    I saw alot of times in Ryanair flights people carrying too much stuff and the gate agents closing eyes. Of course, when some people abuses everybody will pay. Even so, not a big diference for me and for the majority of people.

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