This useful travel hack helps you avoid overweight luggage fees on your next trip

Never get an overweight luggage fee again with this handy travel gadget

Travel gadgets, person leaving the house carrying two suitcases
(Image credit: ConvertKit / Unsplash)

Picture this: You’ve spent hours meticulously packing to go on your well-deserved holiday, only to arrive at the check-in and be told your bag is overweight. We’ve all been there but it doesn’t make it any less annoying!

Before boarding a flight, it’s important to double check the size and weight of your bag and whether the airline will accept it or not. For example, British Airways accept the best carry-on luggage up to 56 x 45 x 25cm including the wheels and handles. It must weigh up to 10kg, and be able to fit into the overhead locker, otherwise your bag will be checked. For checked luggage, your best suitcase must measure 90 x 75 x 43cm and weigh up to 23kg in economy and premium economy, or up to 32kg in first and business class.

But even if your luggage fits the sizing requirements, it’s always the weight that seems to push the limits. So, to avoid being made to repack in the boarding queue or having to ditch your belongings at the airport, you need to invest in a digital luggage scale.

A digital luggage scale is a handy travel gadget which measures and weighs your bags to ensure they aren't overweight. The majority of digital luggage scales are petite, compact and portable, so not only will they save you money on overweight luggage fees at the check-in, but they can also fit into your bag so you can double check the weight after you’ve done serious souvenir shopping on your holiday.

The way digital luggage scales work is quite simple, although each one has its own way of operating. In general, all you have to do is turn on the scale and select the measuring unit. You can typically choose between pounds or kilograms, and while most luggage scales are digital, there are a few analogue options available so it’ll completely depend on which luggage scale you buy.

Digital luggage scale

(Image credit: Amazon)

Luggage scales act in the same way as the best bathroom scales. Rather than placing your luggage scale on the floor and standing on it (I definitely don’t recommend you do that!), you simply hang your bag from the hook or strap. Lift up your bag by the handle and wait for the scale to measure its weight – most scales will make a beeping noise when it’s done.

From there, compare your luggage’s weight to make sure the airline you’re flying with will accept your bag. Most luggage scales are pretty accurate, but to give yourself a bit of wiggle room, try to stay at least a pound under the limit just in case.

Digital luggage scales are incredibly handy, especially if you’re a frequent traveller or you’re heading on a big family holiday. By using a luggage scale after you’ve finished packing and before you get to the airport, you save yourself a lot of time, stress and money. Luggage scales are also fairly inexpensive and you can find them at most retailers, including Amazon, Argos and Superdrug, to name a few.

For more travel advice, check out these 12 travel gadgets you need to take with you on your next trip.

Bethan Girdler-Maslen
Home Editor

Beth is Home Editor for T3, looking after style, living and wellness. From the comfiest mattresses to what strange things you can cook in an air fryer, Beth covers sleep, yoga, smart home, coffee machines, grooming tools, fragrances, gardening and much more. If it's something that goes in your house, chances are Beth knows about it and has the latest reviews and recommendations! She's also in the know about the latest deals and discount codes from top brands and retailers.

Having always been passionate about writing, she’s written for websites, newspapers and magazines on a variety of topics, from jewellery and culture, to food and telecoms. You can find her work across numerous sites, including Wedding Ideas Magazine, Health & Wellbeing, The Bristol Post, Fashion & Style Directory, TechRadar, CreativeBloq and more. In her spare time, Beth enjoys running, reading, baking and attempting craft projects that will probably end in disaster!