A duffel bag is an invaluable tool to have when traveling by air. Most duffel bags fit the maximum dimensions for carry-on luggage, so you don’t have to check them in at the airport. So, what is the typical size of a duffel bag?
The standard duffel bag size is around 22 inches in length, 14 inches in height, and 10 inches in width when packed full.
Airlines typically have a 22 × 14 × 9-inch policy for overhead luggage, so you will have to limit how many belongings you pack inside a standard duffel bag.
In this guide, I’ll explain the dimensions of a duffel bag in greater detail, what a duffel bag can be used for, and how to go about choosing the right duffel bag for your next multiday journey.
What Is a Duffel Bag?
A duffel bag is a type of bag that has handles and a long strap. You can carry it around a suitcase by bringing the handles together or sling it around your shoulder by the strap.
Another name for duffel back is gym bag, sports bag, or overnight bag, though there are slight technical differences between them.
The great thing about duffel bags, as opposed to regular backpacks, is that they are considerably larger but don’t usually surpass the carry-on dimensions restrictions imposed by airlines.
That means you can fill your duffel bag with a reasonable amount of clothing, toiletries, and other supplies without having to check it in.
If you’re going to spend a few days out of town or in the wilderness, you would typically want to use a duffel bag and a sleeping bag. The duffel bag is large enough to carry enough supplies for up to a week, depending on their size, but they have a fairly tiny footprint.
How Big Is a Duffel Bag?
Like any type of bag, duffel bags vary in size, ranging from incredibly small to incredibly large. The typical dimensions of a duffel bag, when fully packed, will be around 17 inches wide, 22 inches tall, and 10 inches deep.
Apart from the physical exterior dimensions of a duffel bag, you should also pay close attention to how much stuff it can carry. Duffel bag capacities are typically measured in liters or gallons, which should give you a pretty good idea of how much stuff it can carry at a time.
Below is a brief chart that describes the dimensions of popular duffel bags, as well as their carrying capacities.
|Vomgomfom||24.2 in.||13.4 in.||10.5 in.||65 liters|
|Trail Maker||24 in.||12 in.||11.5 in.||55 liters|
|Adidas||24.75 in.||13 in.||12 in.||65 liters|
|Dimayar||24 in.||13 in.||11 in.||65 liters|
|Dalix||20 in.||10 in.||9 in.||50 liters|
|Flipe Varela||24.96 in.||13.73 in.||11.44 in.||65 liters|
|Redcamp||31 in.||16 in.||12 in.||96 liters|
|Redseasons||31 in.||18 in.||10 in.||96 liters|
|Coolbebe||36 in.||13 in.||13 in.||100 liters|
|Mier||23.25 in.||13 in.||13 in.||45 liters|
|Bluboon||18.1 in.||9.1 in.||8.7 in.||23 liters|
As you can see from the table, the exterior dimensions of a duffel bag don’t draw the entire picture about how much or how little it can hold.
Duffel bags can come with multiple zipped or mesh pockets and compartments that will add to their total carrying capacity.
What Can I Use a Duffel Bag for?
It’s pretty clear that you can stuff your belongings in a duffel bag while traveling, but what other purposes does it serve?
Duffel bags are usually large enough to hold onto most of your sports gear, which means you don’t have to leave them inside your locker.
You’ll find multiple compartments and pockets inside and outside the duffel bag, so you can store your smelly jerseys separately from your fresh clothes.
Some duffel bags, such as the 45-liter Mier, come with shoulders traps that allow you to wear them like backpacks.
The benefit a duffel bag has over traditional backpacks is that they’re much larger, so you can pack up to a week’s worth of supplies while wandering through the wilderness or backpacking across foreign lands.
Are you moving houses or apartments? Did you run out of moving boxes? What you can do is pack your duffel back with small trinkets and keep them away from the bulkier items.
That way, you don’t have to worry about them breaking during the move. Just leave the duffel bag in the back of your car, and you’re ready to go.
Carry-on Size Restrictions by Airlines
Let’s take a look at the carry-on restrictions set in place by various airlines. Please note that the following figures are subject to change based on the airlines’ policies.
|Airline||Maximum Carry-on Dimensions|
|Alaska Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|Allegiant Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|American Airlines||18 × 14 × 8 in.|
|Avelo Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|Breeze Airways||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|Delta Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|Eastern Airlines||22 × 14 × 10 in.|
|Frontier Airlines||24 × 16 × 10 in.|
|Hawaiian Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|JetBlue||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
|Southwest Airlines||24 × 16 × 10 in.|
|Spirit Airlines||22 × 18 × 10 in.|
|Sun Country Airlines||24 × 16 × 11 in.|
|United Airlines||22 × 14 × 9 in.|
What If My Duffel Bag Exceeds Size Restriction Policies?
If you have to force your duffel bag into the baggage sizer, it will be rejected by the airline. When this happens, you will be charged additional baggage fees, which can cost around $30.
So, if you don’t feel like spending $30 on baggage fees, you should carefully measure the size of your bag and ensure that it’s not completely packed.
As you can see from the duffel bag size chart above, most duffel bags will exceed airline carry-on policies, so either shop for something or don’t fill the bag with more than you need.