I will be flying for the first time in several years. What is the largest size suitcase allowed on the planes without paying extra charge? I need to buy a new one, the one I have now weighs 30# empty! Not much left for clothes.
Here's one major airline's policy
. You can follow the embedded links if you need information on charges for excess baggage or whatever else.
The policies of the other major airlines are pretty similar.
If you are buying new luggage, I highly recommend luggage of reasonable quality of the so-called "rollerback" design. The really cheap luggage is not very durable, but there's no point in buying "designer" luggage for airlines to trash. The "rollerback" design is very easy to wheel through airports, cruise terminals, etc. When cruising, I usually bring two "rollerback" pieces and often wheel them on and off the ship myself, so I have my luggage as soon as I get aboard. I can tell you from personal experience that the "rollerback" pieces of size 26" and smaller go right through the cruise lines' screeners, though I have had a port baggage handler who greeted my transfer bus try to tell me that they would not.