At the time of writing this post, WOW air allows you only a single carry on bag that weighs at most 10kg, which is about 22lbs, and a maximum dimensional size of 42 x 32 x 25cm (16.5 x 12.6 x 9.8″). (Check up to date limits here) When you consider the carry on bag you’re using probably weighs a few pounds already, you’re not left with too much remaining to pack what you need for your trip. When I was getting ready to go to Iceland, I tried to put my DSLR camera gear and an ultralight tripod in my backpack and it was already over weight. That just wasn’t going to work, and I wasn’t about to shell out more money to increase the allowable weight of my carry on. That’s about when we found the loophole and all of our problems were solved.
WOW air checks your carry on bag size and weight when you check in and pick up your boarding pass, which for those unfamiliar with international flight, is literally the very first thing you do when you get to the airport. When you walk up to the desk, the attendant weighs your carry on bag on the scale, and if its 5kg or under as well as somewhere around the dimensional limit, they put a little tag on it that says “Clear for takeoff”. This is the last time they checked the weight or size of our carry ons in the airport at both Boston Logan and Keflavik in Iceland. Why is this important? Because as soon as you get the “Clear for takeoff” slip, you’re in the clear. You can stuff as much as you possibly can into the bag. Since I was travelling with 3 other people, we all weighed in separately and whoever was going to check in and get their bag weighed emptied most of it out, and left the contents with the others waiting. Then as soon as they got weighed and cleared, they took their stuff back and filled the bag with as much as they possibly could. To maximize this effect, we also wore 3 jackets and stuffed our pockets full with as much stuff as possible.
We looked ridiculous, like dumb tourists who mistakenly thought Iceland was Antarctica, but the amount we were able to bring on the plane made it worth it. Keep in mind you still have to be reasonable with this method. If you try to weigh an empty giant duffel bag and then show up at the gate with a 40lb bag bursting at the seams, they’re probably going to stop you. But in my personal experience, I was able to get a 30lb 40Liter hiking backpack with a thermarest sleeping pad hanging off the bottom to Iceland and back without issue. Good luck and let me know if for some reason this method fails you.
Note: This entire process takes place before any kind of security check. This loophole has absolutely nothing to do with getting things through security.