Does a Diaper Bag Count as a Personal Item?

Parenthood often comes with a whirlwind of responsibilities, especially when traveling. If you’re a parent gearing up for a flight, you might be wondering – does a diaper bag count as a personal item? Let’s dive into this common query and unravel the rules surrounding diaper bags in the world of air travel.

What is a Personal Item?

A Personal Item is a small piece of baggage that passengers are allowed to bring on board an aircraft in addition to their carry-on bag. Personal items must fit under the seat in front of the passenger and typically have size restrictions of 18 inches x 14 inches x 8 inches or smaller. Some common examples of personal items include purses, backpacks, laptop bags, and small duffel bags.

There are several benefits to bringing a personal item on board an aircraft:

  • Convenience: You can easily access your personal items during the flight without having to retrieve them from the overhead bin.
  • Organization: You can keep your personal belongings organized and separate from your other carry-on items.
  • Additional Storage: You can pack additional items that you may need during the flight, such as a book, snacks, or a change of clothes.

What Can I Pack in My Diaper Bag?

Diaper bags are a must-have for any parent on the go. They provide a convenient place to store all of your baby’s essentials, from diapers and wipes to bottles and snacks.

Here is a list of things you should pack in your diaper bag:

  • Diapers: Pack enough diapers for your entire trip, plus a few extra in case of accidents.
  • Wipes: Wipes are essential for cleaning up messes, both big and small.
  • Diaper rash cream: Diaper rash cream can help to prevent and treat diaper rash.
  • Changing pad: A changing pad is essential for changing diapers on the go.
  • Snacks: Pack plenty of snacks for your baby, especially if you will be on the go for a long time.

Related: Can you bring Scissors on a Plane?

Diaper Bag Policies by Airlines

Most major airlines allow one diaper bag per child to be brought on board in addition to your carry-on luggage and personal item. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule. For example, Spirit Airlines does not allow a diaper bag as an additional item; instead, it must be counted as your personal item.

Here is a table summarizing the diaper bag policies of some major airlines:


Diaper Bag Policy

United Airlines 

One diaper bag per child, in addition to carry-on luggage and personal item

American Airlines 

One diaper bag per child, in addition to carry-on luggage and personal item

Delta Airlines

One diaper bag per child, in addition to carry-on luggage and personal item

Southwest Airlines

One diaper bag per child, in addition to carry-on luggage and personal item

Spirit Airlines

Diaper bag counts as personal item


A Diaper bag is generally considered a separate item from your standard carry-on when flying with most airlines. However, it’s crucial to be aware of size restrictions and ensure that the contents are directly related to caring for your child during the flight. 

Ryan Holdsworth
Ryan Holdsworth

I am a Content writer and Travel Blogger. My Passion lies in exploring the world and share my travel experiences. Join me on my travel adventures where I uncover hidden gems, share travel tips, and explore the world through the lens of aviation.

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