Time to downsize to a cabin bag: KLM has now started charging for checked luggage

You’ll now have to pay if you want to take a suitcase onto almost every KLM flight (nooooo)! From now on this charge will apply to almost every flight in their ‘light rate’ and we all know how much that adds to the overall cost (100 euros to be precise). 

If you’ve bought a ‘light rate’ ticket – expect not to get free checked baggage any longer. This is good news if you’re only going on a small trip and can get away with hand luggage, as this will actually make these tickets cheaper, but if you’re like me and need to take half of your wardrobe, then you might want to rethink. Checking in a case will now set you back an additional 100 euros.


Who doesn’t have to pay?

Free checked luggage will still stay free to people who buy flex and some standard tickets, however, you are paying so much more so it’s to be expected.

If you’re a frequent flyer and are in the highest levels of their Flying Blue savings programme, then you also won’t have to pay for checked luggage.

Hand luggage is still free – so if you can squeeze everything into a much smaller case, then you won’t have to pay a cent over your ticket price.


But taking hand luggage isn’t entirely going to solve your problems…

Many of us are guilty of taking a cabin bag (a literal case) that is bursting at the seams and barely passes the hand luggage test (because hey, it’s 100 euros more, that’s not cheap). However, on busy flights where every one of us is doing it, it’s causing a lot of delays as half of the time it won’t fit properly. According to De Telegraaf, KLM (and Transavia) wants to tackle this by taxing larger hand luggage on European flights, so they can make more money and you can downsize even further.

KLM has been criticised for making the tickets appear cheaper, when really overall we are going to all be paying a lot more.

Any thoughts? Let us know in the comments!

Emma Brown
A familiar face at DutchRevew. Emma arrived in Holland in 2016 for a few weeks, fell in love with the place and never left. Here she rekindled her love of writing and travelling. Now you'll find her eating stroopwafels in the DutchReview office since 2017.


  1. Good idea to make tickets cheaper and tax people for luggage. This way the cost are better divided and people will think about what they take along.

  2. I often travel alone with my two kids do the logistics of pushing a buggy, holding a kids hand and dragging 2 cabin cases is impossible. I always check in my bag because I simply cannot carry luggage around the airport along with 2 kids. In the past I always chose KLM over no frills airlines like easy jet because KLM didn’t charge for all the extras. Now they’ve jumped on the cheapo bandwagon too. Ryanair and easyJet suddenly look more appealing than KLM….I never thought i’d be thinking that!!


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