5 min read

Frontier's Personal Item Policy Exposed: Pack Smart!

Ever tried squeezing your bag into that tiny box at the gate? Let's unravel the mystery of Frontier's personal item policy—because no one likes last-minute luggage wrestling matches!

Tobi Miles
September 13, 2022

With various airlines offering various getaways, it’s best to know the limits of carry-on and personal items. For Frontier, having a personal item along with your carry-on can be acceptable. However, they have some strict rules on their personal item size limit.

Frontier is strict regarding personal items and carry-on luggage. You’re allowed one small personal item on board any flight, free of charge, but it must fit below the seat. However, full-size carry-ons are subject to fees. For peace of mind, it’s advisable to stick within their size limits of 18” x 14” x 8” bags or less.

Frontier is a well-known airline carrier with decently priced flights and many destinations. They allow passengers to carry personal items and bags, but there are size restrictions. Passengers can rest assured that as long as they stay within Frontier’s limits, they are good to go.

What Are Frontier’s Requirements For Personal Items?

Frontier allows each passenger one carry-on and one personal item. Frontier says any personal items must be no bigger than a purse, backpack, kids bag, briefcase, or laptop case. Typically, your personal item must be able to fit under the seat.

Therefore, each person can have a total of two bags without being charged a fee. They can charge you an upcharge if you wish to carry on more. There are size restrictions on what you bring on the plane, so be aware that Frontier will be cautious of more oversized bags.

You may have to check your bag at the gate if it does not meet the requirements. But overall, Frontier is lenient when it comes to your carry-on and personal items.

They also do not have a designated weight restriction for personal items, only carry-ons. Carry-ons must be 35 pounds or less. However, Frontier will be aware of all personal items and may check your bag for safety if it is too heavy.

Related Read: How Big Can My Toiletry Bag Be To Fly? Quart-Size Bags

How Strict Is Frontier About The Size Of Personal Items?

According to airline rules, the size of your Frontier carry-on or personal item cannot exceed 18” x 14” x 8”. This means you can carry personal items ranging from laptop bags, diaper bags, and purses. These bags are allowed as long as you can easily stow them in the overhead compartments or under the seat.

They are relatively strict about size to ensure that all passengers are extended the same courtesy. The size limitation gives room for any and all passengers that wish to fly with a carry-on. 

You should be able to stow your personal item under the seat. Frontier wants to ensure all passengers fly safely and comfortably. If it’s too big and extra space is needed to accommodate it, you might need to check it.

How Does Frontier Measure A Personal Item?

Upon check-in, you may be asked to place your items on a scale and in a measuring device. This will ensure your bags do not exceed any height and weight requirements for the flight. You will also find that at security, they will scan your bags.

The scanner typically has specially-sized bins nearby for attendants to double-check the size of bags. If they think your bag might exceed the size limit, they will place it in this bin to confirm it will meet the size requirement.

So long as your bags fit in the bins and under the scanner, you should be clear to fly. Once on the flight, you will have another measurement to test whether or not your bag is suitable. Your personal item should fit easily under the seat in front of you.

Assistive devices are also allowed and can be stowed with the crew or under your seat. Assistive devices that are permitted include wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, car seats, and strollers.

Related Read: How Strict Is JetBlue with Personal Item Size?

Can A Backpack Be A Personal Item On The Frontier?

Frontier says if a backpack is 14” x 18” x 8”  or less, it is considered a personal item. You can carry a backpack without hesitation, and it should fit under the seat in front of you. However, backpacks can come in a wide variety of sizes, so be mindful of what size you have.

If your backpack is bigger than the required personal item size but not more than 24” x 16” x 10”, it is considered a carry-on. If this is the case, you may end up paying for an extra carry-on or checked bag. The price for an additional carry-on can be between $30-55 extra in additional fees.

Can A Duffel Bag Be A Personal Item On Frontier?

Duffel bags can be a bit controversial since they tend to run a bit bigger. Duffel bags are only allowed so long as they stay under the 24” X 16” X 10” size requirements. A duffel bag can also not weigh more than 35 pounds.

Duffel bags are often a travel essential bag. But according to Frontier, they must fit under the seat in front if you want to claim it as a personal item.

Related Read: Can You Bring Portable Chargers On A Plane?

Is A Fanny Pack A Personal Item?

Since you can wear a fanny pack, it goes into the category of personal items. You can have any size fanny pack with you, so long as it straps or wraps around your waist.

Your fanny pack, since it's a personal item you wear, doesn't get measured or weighed at check-in. You will still have to put it through the security checkpoint for screening and x-ray. You must also follow all rules and guidelines when packing items inside your fanny pack.

Fanny packs are often an essential personal item for travel. Many fanny packs are used for carrying medical supplies on a plane. By following all airline guidelines, you can carry on epi-pens and diabetic care essentials. 

What If My Personal Item Is Too Big?

If your personal item is deemed too big to be a personal item for flight, there are a few solutions. Depending on the size, your personal item may become a carry-on item. So long as you do not already have a carry-on, fees should not apply to you.

If you have an additional carry-on bag and your personal item is too big, you may pay anywhere from $30-$50. This is because you are allowed one free carry-on and one personal item on Frontier airlines. If your personal item is too big for flight, another solution may exist.

If your bag is too big for travel or the flight attendants feel it is too big, you will have to pay to check it. Adding an additional $25 at the counter, but if it gets checked at the gate, you can expect to pay $60. It is better to be on the safe side and pack a personal bag that meets all rules and regulations. 

Related Read: How to Choose an 18x 14x8 Bag

Can My Personal Item Become My Carry-On?

Your personal item can become a carry-on if it is within the size limit and you have no other carry-on. So, it must be no more than 24” X 16” X 10” and 35-pounds or less. 

However, Frontier allows each passenger one carry-on and one personal item. Therefore, anything in addition to this will cost you an additional fee.

What Are Frontier’s Size And Weight Limits For Carry-Ons?

The height of your carry-on bag should be no more than 24” tall, a width of 16”, and a depth of 10”. Also, it cannot exceed 35 pounds. This allows a bag to be placed securely in the overhead compartments in flight.

The height and weight include all handles, straps, and wheels a bag may utilize. If a handle or strap makes your bag too tall, you must find a different carry-on bag.

How Strict Is Frontier On Carry-On Bag Size Limits?

Frontier is pretty strict on their carry-on bag size only because they wish to be fair to all passengers. Frontier created such rules to ensure that everyone can bring items with them in flight. This is to give space for all personal items and carry-ons that may be needed.

Frontier employees follow the rules to maintain clear aisles while in the air. Their passengers' safety and consideration are top priorities.

How Much Are Fees Associated For Bags Over The Size Limit?

Frontier’s fees for bags over various size limits can range from $25 to $100. Fees depend on the size of the bag and when you check it. 

Attendants calculate costs by the weight and height of the bag at the check-in counter. However, the costs extend higher if your bag is deemed over the size limit at the gate.

If your carry-on bag exceeds the 35-pound limit, you may pay an additional $25 at the counter. If the weight of the oversized item ranges from 41 to 50 pounds, then $50 is added. You will have to pay a hefty fee of $100 if your bag is within the range of 51 to 100 pounds. 

Be sure to measure and weigh your bag before leaving for the airport or have the ticket counter check. You can avoid a hefty fee with a simple check.


Frontier is an airline that prides itself on cheaper yet satisfactory airfare. This includes complimentary luggage control and gives passengers one carry-on and personal item. Your personal item should be small enough to be held or fit under the seat in front of you. 

The size and weight of your personal item do matter when trying to board a flight. You should know that purses, backpacks, and duffle bags can be considered personal items. Just be sure to stay well within Frontier’s limits, or a fee will be added.

If your personal item is deemed too big, you can opt to make it your carry-on if you don’t already have one. If your personal item is too big, Frontier may check your bag at the gate, and fees go up. Frontier is strict on its bag policy to ensure that all passengers have a safe and convenient journey.

Article updated:
January 5, 2024

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