Rookie Wednesday: What is the Maximum Size Carry-on Bag for a Delta CRJ700 / CRJ900? Just what will fit (or not fit) in an overhead?

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RenesPoints Rookie

Welcome to a regular feature on the Renés Points blog. This blog series covers in a “rookie” way either a Delta or travel related theme and attempts to break down to a basic level each topic. You can read up on all the previous posts HERE. Now on to this featured topic.

Delta Connection CRJ700 Jet

I am a fan of the CRJ700 & CRJ900 that Delta (and Delta connection partners) flies. So much so I spent a massive 50,000 SkyMiles just to fly the first ever regularly scheduled CRJ700 from my home town airport SBN or South Bend, Indiana (Delta later downgraded this again to a CRJ200 but such is life) The CRJ700 and CRJ900s are leaps and bounds better than the horrid and painful CRJ200s that should all be turned into soda cans. One of the biggest perks of these jets, beyond real 1st class seats, is that they also have “real” overhead storage.

I really hate these things. You?

Not having to get a “pink tag” and worry about A) the bag getting broken, beat-up or impacted in some other way or B) that you have to wait forever in a hot or cold jet bridge when all you want to do is get to your next flight or the Sky Club is a sweet enhancement (see what I did there?)!.

I have for a few years now been using my Samsonite 20″ spinner <-LINK and I still just love it for the price / value / size and features. It is light weight, can be locked when I do have to plane side check it, and the wheels roll like butter. But will it fit neatly in the overhead in CRJ700 or CRJ900 when the gate agent challenges you that “that bag will not fit”? Take a look:

Yes – It fits! – Just!

As you can see it fits! Now it is a tight fit and I will say it can and will result in a bit of scratches on the bag to get it in – but it does make it. But just how big is the space?

Measure twice they say!

As you can see you do not want to go much over a 9″ wide bag if you want it to fit inside these larger but still compact overhead bins. Lengthwise you do have a ton of space but what about the other way.

13″-ish. Got it!

I neglected to put a tape inside the bin (bad blogger) but from the other photo and putting a tape on my bag we get a close size to compare that isn’t much over 13″ and you are going to start to have a problem getting the door closed.

Fits even better on CRJ900!

Bottom line while some are reporting that 21x14x9 works just fine I can tell you for a fact (with photos) that my 20x13x9 Samsonite just makes it on these Delta connection CRJ700 and CRJ900 jets! – René

If you have to check a bag, save with these cards’ travel credits!

Get your first checked bag free — and extend the savings to up to eight others traveling with you on the same itinerary! Just one of the perks you can enjoy with a Delta Amex card.

  • Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express (learn more)
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  1. I am able to get my 20″ bag in the 700 provided it’s not too full, and the 900 always. American stopped me from doing so once, even when I was in first class, because it “wasn’t fair on the other passengers”. Can you imagine if Delta said “OK folks we can see it’s a full flight today so everyone gate check your bags otherwise it won’t be fair on those that can’t carry on their bags”.

  2. It doesn’t matter whether it fits of not. You’re at a whim of grumpy flight attendants. I laughed when I saw your post because of how timely it was. Only last week I flew on American’s CRJ900 for the first time. I have a fairly small 19″ Briggs and Reilly carryon which fits into ANY plane’s overhead bin, including the tiny 175s. I am a United 1k and it fits into bins of all of their planes. However, United has internal policy not to permit regular carryons on their smallest planes (yes for CRJ700 and 900, NO for the 175). Anyway, CRJ900 is the largest regional jet and most carryons fit (I also have a 21″ B&R that is tall and narrow and it fits as well even though it looks very large). The AA flight attendant however, blocked my way and said there is an “FAA regulation” preventing me from bringing a normal type of carryon on that flight. Year, right. But I had no choice and couldn’t bring it onboard.

  3. Rene, would you know what the actual FAA regs are for the 175? I was denied bring my carry-on, even though it fits nicely on the 175. I was told, due to the wheels, it violated the FAA regs. ???

  4. Yeah, but the bag of about that size which I bought because it fits just fine under the seat on a CRJ200 does notify under most of the seats in a 700! Because of pillars under the seats it will only fit only under aisle seats.

  5. Rene
    I hate it when someone cites rules that do not exist. According to the FAA website: ‘The maximum size carry-on bag for most airlines is 45 linear inches (the total of the height, width, and depth of the bag). Anything larger should be checked.’ Nothing about wheels that I could find. Also – note it says ‘most airlines’. It does not say FAA says. To me, it is more irritating when someone can not count. Only two bags. Not three(one being oversize), plus lunch, a shopping bag and a fishing rod.

  6. @Greg, I don’t believe there is an FAA regulation on this matter. As I mentioned in my comment, United has an internal regulation on this pertaining to the 175s (but not the 900s). The first time the United flight attendant told me this, I asked her to show me the rule. She actually did and I took a picture of the page. But this was a couple of years ago and I no longer have it.

  7. I avoid all CRJs, even at additional cost if possible. If not I make sure it is a short trip and use a soft sided duffle bag. I DO NOT want Delta’s Baggage THUGS handling my luggage as Delta ALWAYS calls their caused damage “normal wear” – even for an ATL Platinum member.

  8. @René
    Do you know if the bins on the CR7 are smaller than those on the CR9. I fly on the CR9 often and my bag fits with no problem, but I rarely fly on the CR7 and I was wondering if there is any difference in the bin sizes between the two?

  9. Red Oxx Air Boss. Fits in Satan’s Chariot and you can pack everything you would need.

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