Baggage Check-in Times

Baggage Cut Off Times

If you are a frequent traveler, you would understand the hassle of reaching the airports just in time for checking in. For some passengers flying has become one of the most stressful things. Between steep airline fees, checked baggage rules, and the risk of delayed or cancelled flights, many passengers find flying very inconvenient.

However, despite the inconvenience, hundreds of thousands of passengers fly every day. Airport check in time depends on many factors including the airline on which you are traveling, the destination and the airport from which you are departing. You need to arrive at the airport before the time of your flight for the check-in process.

All the flights require the luggage to be checked in hours before departure otherwise the airlines do not accept your luggage.

If you are still unsure about the latest developments, we bring to you a list of things you need to consider for baggage check-ins or baggage cut off times.

How Early Should I Reach at The Airport for Luggage Check-In?

Arriving at the airport depends on the factor whether you are flying internationally or domestically. For the former, one must arrive at the airport at least 3 hours before the official time of departure. It might sound a lot but happens to be a reasonable amount for getting your bags checked in.

In case you are flying at peak hours or during the holidays, the airports are bustling with long lines of people waiting for their turn. In such times, it is convenient to reach as soon as possible to avoid any delay issues at all. If you are traveling internationally you must check your luggage at least 60 minutes prior to departure. Again, every airline has exceptions.

If you happen to be traveling domestically, you are still required to reach one or two hours before the departure. There is a possibility of departing from a small airport which means limited staff resulting in longer processing time. There are certain flights that allow you to arrive an hour before departure but you need to double-check with your airline to ensure the same.

How Early Should I Reach To Check-In?

If you can spare extra bucks, there is nothing like online check-in rather than doing it at the airport. This way you will end up saving a lot of time and most of the airlines have started opting for the same these days.

In fact, some airlines have made it mandatory for online checking in but don't worry if you fail to do so. Try to get to the airport an extra 30 minutes prior to your departure in case you need to check-in at the airport.

Factors to be Considered for Reaching on Time

There are few things that you can keep in mind to avoid any hassles related to baggage cut-off times mentioned as following:

Peak Times: If you are traveling during peak time, it is recommended to check the airline website to get the right information about peak times and days. You can simply google the same as well if you find website browsing difficult.

Baggage Drop-off: The airlines have strict policies when it comes to baggage drop-off. The passengers are supposed to arrive earlier than the time limit otherwise the airlines do not accept luggage being dropped off.

Check-in Requirements: You will end up saving a lot of time since a lot of airlines let you check-in at least 24 hours before the departure. Remember to reach at least 30 minutes prior in case you need to check-in at the airport.

Gate Arrival and Boarding Time Limit: In case you arrive too late, the airline can deny boarding for you altogether. The information about the boarding limit is clearly mentioned on the boarding pass. Make sure to get to the gates prior to the cut-off time since most airlines close the gates 15-20 minutes before.

Additionally, the airport from which you depart has its own rules regarding your checked luggage. For the right information you must check with the airport from which you are departing.

Major airlines such as Delta Airlines, American Airlines, United Airlines, JetBlue and Southwest Airlines require that passengers check their luggage 30-40 minutes before departure for domestic flights. They require you to check-in luggage 60 minutes or more before you depart for international flights.

Further, passengers departing on any of these airlines out of Chicago, Orlando, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Atlanta, Dallas, Miami and other major airports must check their luggage with additional time before departure.

Each individual airline is free to make its own decisions regarding domestic and international checked baggage cutoff times.


Feel free to reach out to your airlines to get any necessary information about the flight check-ins and baggage cut-off times. Since prevention is better than cure, try to make it as early as possible to get the best out of your traveling experience!