Flying with odd-size baggage? No problem!

Most travellers arrive at the airport with a suitcase or backpack filled with clothes. But what if you want to fly with your bicycle, fishing rod or skis? You can bring those with you too! You're welcome to travel to and from Schiphol with baggage that is larger, heavier or 'odder' than usual.

From kayaks to cats

When is baggage considered odd size? As a rule of thumb, any baggage that does not look like a regular suitcase or bag is odd-size baggage. This includes bicycles, golf clubs, skis and snowboards, surfboards, kayaks, fishing gear and even pets. Items like buggies, prams, child seats, walking frames and wheelchairs are also classed as odd size.

Too big or too heavy?

As you can see, there's a lot you're allowed to take on the plane. But not everything is permitted, mainly because our conveyor belts simply cannot handle very large or heavy objects. A pole-vaulting pole, for example, won't fit. And if you wanted to take along 85 bags of sugar for your family, that would be too heavy for the belt and for the employee that has to load and unload it. Baggage that is too big (taller than 3.5 metres) or too heavy (more than 80 kilos) can be transported as air cargo.

Check in as usual

If you are travelling with odd-size baggage, you can still check in at the regular check-in desk. The employee of the airline you are flying with will label all baggage, put your suitcases and bags on the belt and then direct you to one of the three odd-size counters at the airport. There, we'll scan your label and take your odd-size baggage from you. You can then head towards the gate.

Seeing straight through your baggage

We then get to work behind the scenes. The procedure for odd-size baggage is actually the same as for regular suitcases and bags. Everything is taken to the basement by conveyor belt or lift. There, we can see straight through your baggage using an X-Ray machine and we check that there's nothing in there that shouldn't be on board. If everything is in order, your baggage is sent to the handling agent, who makes sure that it gets onto the aircraft.

No extra charge

Schiphol does not charge extra for odd-size baggage, but your airline might. Usually, you need to indicate whether you are flying with odd-size baggage when you book your tickets. If in doubt, you can always get in touch with your airline.

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