A budget airline passenger stuffed her belongings down the front of her jumpsuit to form a pregnancy “bump” in a bid to avoid paying the excess baggage fee.
Travel writer Rebecca Andrews almost pulled off the innovative stunt while flying from Melbourne to Sydney with Jetstar, before being found out at the last minute.
The airline only allows travellers to bring a 7kg bag as hand luggage unless they pay AU$60 (£32), prompting Andrews to attempt to cheat the system.
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In a video uploaded to Instagram, Andrews filmed herself donning a stretchy leopard-print jumpsuit, under which she concealed a laptop down her back, and a heavy charger and extra clothes down her front, the latter rolled to form a bump that made her appear pregnant.
She then layered loose clothing over the top.
Andrews advised practising at home first, but only implementing the hack at the airport once through security to avoid rousing suspicion.
The hack successfully reduced her bag weight to within the 7kg limit, and Andrews said she was on the cusp of getting away with her plan.
“Once all my layers were arranged, I came out of the baby-room at Gate 53 in Sydney Airport, to find a mum changing her kid’s nappy,” she shared on news.com.au.
“‘How far along are you?’ she asked me looking at my tummy.
“‘Three kilos, give or take,’ I said, rolling my much lighter case behind me.
“‘Er, I mean five months.’”
However, when she got to the gate, Andrews realised she was the last passenger to board the flight, meaning all the attention was on her.
As she went to board, she dropped her ticket and had to bend over to pick it up.
“The shape of my laptop down my back suddenly became apparent,“ she said.
A gate agent noticed and asked if Andrews had a backpack on under her jacket.
Andrews admits she “freaked out” and confessed; Jetstar ultimately charged her the extra fee.
But the end result hasn’t put her off: “Honestly, if my carry-on was ever overweight I would do it again and just make sure I was not the last person to board,” she said.
Andrew is far from the first person to attempt to get around airlines’ strict luggage weight restrictions.
Earlier this month Gel Rodriguez from Davao City in the Philippines decided to wear as many of her clothes as possible, claiming that the multi-layered outfit saved her 2.5kg in precious weight.
She posted a picture of herself, dressed in at least three visible pairs of trousers and seven tops, to Facebook. It went viral, garnering 20,000 shares and 32,000 reactions.
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