16 Easyjet tricks
How to manipulate the budget behemoth
You can now pay to bring a second larger bag on board
Easyjet cut its baggage allowance last year, which means if you've booked a standard seat you can only bring a small bag into the cabin, measuring up to 45 x 36 x 20cm – roughly the size of a rucksack.
Those with standard seats can now pay to take a second larger bag (56cm x 45cm x 25cm) on board for £5.99-£32.99. You'll also get 'speedy boarding' included, so you can be one of the first to board.
Boost your hand luggage allowance using a carrier bag
Unless you pay extra, Easyjet has a strict hand luggage limit of just one item – so you can only take one rucksack, handbag or laptop bag, for example.
However, there is a loophole to get a second bag on for free, and it lies in post-security shopping. In addition to your standard hand luggage allowance Easyjet allows you to take one shopping bag on board (see its full baggage policy).
Now it's worth noting that officially Easyjet says this must be "one standard bag of goods bought at the airport" – and of course, we're not suggesting you purchase unnecessarily.
But if you do have a carrier bag from duty-free or similar, it'll give you some room for manoeuvre when you walk through the departure gate. Some passengers report they've been able to stuff the odd item which won't fit in their hand luggage into it, or even a handbag – others say they've successfully boarded with a carrier bag they brought with them specially.
Get an extra piece of cabin luggage AND extra legroom from £8ish each way
If your luggage won't fit into your free cabin bag but you don't have a huge amount extra to bring, you can get a second cabin bag – and some extra room to stretch your legs – from £7.99 each way.
Easyjet now charges £5.99-£32.99 for a second, larger cabin bag. Or you can pay £6.99-£35.49 to check in an extra 15kg bag. But if you book an extra-legroom or first-row seat, you're entitled to take a second bag into the cabin (maximum size 56 x 45 x 25cm).
Prices for these seats range from £7.99 to £39.99 each way – similar to just checking in a small extra bag – so you could get both an additional bag and a premium seat for the price of one.
Take squishable hand luggage – it can defy size limit restrictions
Like most airlines, Easyjet has specific hand luggage size restrictions – but while size matters, the type of bag you take can make a big difference too.
Holdalls can carry all you need, and are likely to fit into the overhead lockers even when they're mostly full of hard-sided wheelie cases. Plus you're more likely to be able to cram one into the bins all hand luggage must fit into if asked to prove it's the right size.
It's also possible that staff may let a holdall through even if it's slightly bigger than the rules for cabin luggage allow.
When's the best time to book?
Easyjet's prices are fluid and move based on demand for any particular flight. They're usually priced cheaply when released, but this can change quickly depending on how many people are booking. So if you can pounce when they're launched, you're often getting the cheapest deal.
It's worth noting that booking a holiday right now isn't financially risk-free. Know the risk, and be aware if you change your mind and get cold feet, refunds are unlikely, and travel insurance won't cover you. See our Coronavirus travel rights guide for full help.
When does Easyjet release tickets?
They're released in several batches throughout the year. Tickets have been released for flights up until 8 May 2023.
Lots of MoneySavers managed to find bargains on previous release days:
If you manage to bag cheap seats just after a release, tell us in the MSE Forum.
Will I definitely get the cheapest tickets as soon as they're released?
There's no way to know that. If there's no demand for a flight, prices could come down – we have occasionally seen prices go up once tickets are released, then go down again in the next few days. Plus Easyjet does occasionally run flight sales, and there's also the chance it could change its pricing policy.
But in the past, booking on seat-release day has worked well – and booking in the days after has normally ensured a decent price too. Only book if it feels right and always do a flight comparison to see if other airlines can beat it.
Easyjet's ticket-release calendar
Here's a summary of which tickets are being released when:
Up to 8 May 2023 Already on sale 9 May 2023 onwards TBC
Easyjet's axed its free refund trick for most – but Easyjet scheme members can still use it
Easyjet's price promise guarantees that if you do find the same flight for less after booking, you'll get the difference back as a credit voucher, which you have to use within six months. You'll need to have booked direct though, and you won't get the difference back if the lower price you've found is a sale price.
Until 2017, this refund trick was open to all, and it's been a favourite of MoneySavers over the past few years. But Easyjet now only offers this if you're a member of – or join – Easyjet Plus or Flight Club.
With Easyjet Plus, only individual members are covered by the price promise – with Flight Club, everyone on the booking is eligible. You can also do the trick if you join Easyjet Plus or Flight Club AFTER booking your flight.
See the Easyjet axing free refund trick MSE News story for more info.
Easyjet Plus membership costs £215/year per person and gives you allocated seating, speedy boarding, an additional small cabin bag and dedicated bag-drop desks, as well as the price promise. Easyjet's Flight Club is an invite-only scheme aimed at frequent flyers who take about 20 flights a year – members get fee-free flight changes and free name changes.
Step 1. Check if the price has dropped. Compare the price Easyjet's website lists with what you paid. If it's cheaper, and there isn't a sale on, you should be able to claim the difference. Don't forget the final price you paid may include extras such as baggage and seat selection, so factor that in.
Step 2. Call to claim your voucher. Have your booking reference and flight details to hand, then call Easyjet customer service on 0330 365 5000 (as it's an 03 number, the call will be part of your minutes allowance or cost no more than a standard number). You have to call – you can't claim by email or letter.
Step 3. Use your credit voucher within six months, by phone only. The difference in price will be emailed to you as an Easyjet credit voucher, usually immediately. If you don't get it, check your spam folder. You'll then have six months to use it on any Easyjet flight – you'll have to call when booking but Easyjet says you'll always pay the price it quotes online.
Unfortunately it seems to be limited to Easyjet – we checked other popular airlines (British Airways, Flybe, Jet2, Ryanair, Thomson and Virgin) and couldn't find any that offer the same.
However, British Airways, Ryanair and Virgin will refund the difference if you find the same flight cheaper with another firm – for example, a travel agent – as long as you booked direct in the first place.
Check in 30 days in advance for a better seat on your flight – at NO extra cost
Unlike other airlines, Easyjet lets you check in and allocates you a seat 30 days before you fly, free. You'll have to pay if you want a specific seat, but the earlier you check in, the more likely it is that you get allocated a better seat.
If you don't want to take the risk and would prefer to reserve a seat when you book, Easyjet charges anything from 99p for a basic seat on a short flight to £39.99 to stretch out in the front row on a longer trip (for a list of costs, see Easyjet's fees and charges).
Whether you pay or just check-in for free 30 days ahead, don't leave it until the last minute. Many seats will already have been snapped up and there's a greater chance you'll be sat away from your family, partner or friends.
The best bet is to check in online (and secure your seats) as early as possible.
Travelling with kids? You DON'T have to pay extra to sit near them
Some budget airlines charge a 'family tax', whereby parents have to fork out extra for seat allocations simply to guarantee they can sit next to their children. We're campaigning for this to change – see the MSE calls for airlines to scrap 'family tax' MSE News story for more.
Easyjet however doesn't charge parents extra. It says it will always try to seat parents next to children where possible, even if they don't pay to reserve a seat, although it recommends you check in as early as possible, as seats are allocated on a first come first served basis. There's no such guarantee for other passengers travelling in groups.
For other airlines' policies, and more tips on how to beat the seat allocation charge rip-off, see our Airline seating guide.
Board earlier to ensure you and your luggage stick together
Yes, it really can be worth getting in the queue as soon as you can.
As with most airlines – and those that fly short-haul in particular – storage space in Easyjet cabins is at a premium. If you board late, there is a chance the overhead lockers near you may be full, meaning you may be forced to put your bag at the other end of the plane.
So to avoid negotiating the scrum to collect it once you've landed, or annoying other passengers if you need something from it during the flight, get to the gate and queue early.
Pay the right way for extra protection
The safest way to pay for a flight over £100 is on a credit card (fully repaid so there's no interest) – then you get Section 75 protection. This means the card company's jointly liable if anything goes wrong. But with a return journey, it's not quite as straightforward as this.
If you book two flights each costing £50, even though the total is £100, you're not covered as each flight counts as a transaction. Each individual single flight would need to be £100 or more to get the extra protection.
Since all card charges were banned in January 2018, there's no extra cost to pay by credit card.
If you're paying by debit card, there's also some protection that means you may be able to get your money back if something goes wrong – though it's not as powerful as Section 75.
It's called 'chargeback', and applies to most debit and charge cards, as well as Visa, Mastercard and Amex credit cards – though it isn't a legal requirement. See our Chargeback guide for more info.
Avoid expensive Easyjet extras such as car hire, hotels and travel insurance – always check prices independently
Once you've chosen your flight, Easyjet will try to bombard you with extras such as hotels, car hire and travel insurance.
While all can be useful or important, don't fall for the flashy graphics, and always check prices elsewhere before booking.
Take travel insurance. Buying it via airlines or holiday agents/brokers is usually far costlier than doing a comparison and finding your own policy (see Travel insurance for full help finding one).
When we looked, Easyjet was offering single trip insurance on a trip to Berlin from £21 per person – for single trip bought separately, prices start at around £7 for an individual Europe policy.
Pack right, and you might be able to take more than you think
Like other budget airlines, Easyjet is pretty strict with its hand luggage policy in terms of the size of your bag – the size limit is now just 45 x 36 x 20cm for free bags, and no more than 56 x 45 x 25cm if you pay to take a second larger bag.
Easyjet also now has a weight limit of 15kg for each bag. But you may be able to squeeze in more than you think. Here are some general packing tips – if you've got more you'd like to share, let us know in the forum.
You must carry liquids and gels in individual, 100ml-maximum containers. All containers must be in one transparent, 20cm x 20cm, resealable bag.
You're allowed to carry more than one 100ml container, so you could, say, decant sunscreen into two 100ml bottles. See the Government's full regulations.
Travel-size lotions and potions can be hugely pricey. So grab small transparent empty bottles, wash and dry them carefully, and fill 'em up from your everyday toiletries. Complimentary mini-toiletry bottles from previous hotel stays are perfect.
Don't be fancy – you can get cheap ones for around £10 and it's more than likely to fall within Easyjet's size restrictions (most are built to cover budget airlines these days).
You can usually stuff more into these than hard cases, as they have a little more give. They're also lighter to begin with even before you've packed, so can be easy to get in and out of the cabin lockers.
This means you'll be able to take a small capsule wardrobe and wash as you go. Plus you won't have to pay for a laundry service.
Many people jet home from a holiday with more than they took. If that's you, ensure you leave space in your luggage for some miniature clogs or an "I heart Rome" mug.
Watch MSE Rose packing like a pro
To really push hand luggage packing to the max, watch this top packing tips video from former MSE team member Rose, who went to study for a PhD (though we don't think it's in luggage packing). She has tons of experience flying on budget airlines and there's nothing like a visual demonstration to help you master the art too.
Top tips for flying hand-luggage-onlyMSE's top tips for flying hand-luggage-onlyEmbedded YouTube Video
Always decide how much luggage you'll need and book checked bags in advance
To keep costs down, hand luggage is obviously best. But if the thought of limiting your holiday luggage to a small case leaves you feeling cold, always pay in advance to check luggage in, otherwise you could be charged as much as £100 per return flight (see Budget flight fee-fighting for other airlines' policies).
Easyjet's baggage policy
These are your options for checked baggage:
- 'Up to 15kg' bag – £6.99 to £35.49 per flight (booked online). You can't buy this size at the airport.
- 'Up to 23kg' bag – £9.49 to £42.49 per flight (booked online). This rises to £48/flight if you wait to pay at the airport check-in desk, or if your bag is too big and you have to pay at the boarding gate.
For both options, you can increase your weight limit:
- Online – £12 per 3kg. Up to a max of 27kg if you've booked a 15kg bag and 32kg if you've booked a 23kg bag
- At the airport – £12/kg. This is what you'll be charged at the airport if you go over your pre-booked limit – so ensure you weigh before you go.
- 'Up to 15kg' bag – £6.99 to £35.49 per flight (booked online). You can't buy this size at the airport.
Don’t carry your luggage – wear it
Unless you've paid for an Easyjet Flexi fare, which includes a second, small item of hand luggage (in other words, a hand or laptop bag), you're restricted to one item of hand luggage only (plus duty-free shopping – see above for how to make the most of this).
And if you've already experienced the boarding gate of an Easyjet flight, there's usually a fair few trying to cram or rearrange luggage in order to fit handbags.
Don't let that be you. Make use of a very valuable asset that you have no choice but to take everywhere with you – your person. The more you carry on you, the less you need to squeeze everything into your cabin bag.
Think large, deep pocketed coats and jackets. Examples include the likes of a 22-pocket Scottevest, a special US survivalist jacket that Martin tested for an ITV show. It was heavy but somehow managed to fit a laptop, two books, a towel, passports, a T-shirt, socks, magazines and much more.
Alternatively, try wearing any heavy coats, big boots or chunky jumpers you're taking with you. They all take up valuable space in a case. Stow items under the seat in front of you if it gets too stuffy on the plane.
Avoid sky-high food prices – pack a mile-high picnic instead
It's a little known fact than mid-air picnics are perfectly within the rules – it's only liquids over 100ml that are banned for security reasons.
Protect your pennies and plan ahead – stocking up on snacks could save a fortune compared to flight prices, and even prices in the shops after security. For instance, when we checked, an Easyjet ham and cheese sandwich cost £4.50. Even at inflated airport prices, a Boots Meal Deal is around £4.20-£4.50, and it comes with a drink and a snack as well.
Bringing your own food may mean you win on taste as well as price. Easyjet may call its in-flight food a 'bistro' to make it sound fancy, but according to those at MSE Towers who've sampled it... well, let's just say it isn't going to win Masterchef.
And the food doesn't have to be boring, either. Why not make it part of the holiday and theme it around where you're going – chorizo and olives for Spain, cold pizza for Italy, sausages and sauerkraut for Germany? Check out the forum's packed lunch thread for a host of ideas – plus if you've a good one, join the discussion and add your own.
Don't assume Easyjet is cheapest – always compare
Easyjet may have the reputation of being a low-cost carrier, but while it can be possible to nab a dirt-cheap flight, you may find a better deal elsewhere.
So after using these tricks always compare the final price you're quoted to the best alternative, using our Cheap flights guide. Plus see our Budget flight fee-fighting guide for loads more hints and tips.
Flight delayed in the last six years? You could be owed £100s in compensation
No one wants their flight to be delayed, but you could at least get some money back for your time.
If you're delayed more than three hours, or your Easyjet flight is cancelled, you could be entitled to about £100-£500 in compensation.
Whether you can claim depends on factors such as where your plane took off from, when it arrived and what caused the delay. To see if you could be owed compensation see our Flight delay compensation guide.
Clever ways to calculate your finances