When flights are delayed or cancelled because of bad weather…
What is gate checking a bag?
Gate checking a bag means that your bag is checked in directly at the gate where you board your flight, rather than at the ticket counter. It is common practice on very small planes, where there isn’t enough overhead storage space for normal carry-on bags and anything larger than a small briefcase must be stowed. On larger planes, airlines will often offer to gate-check bags and waive the usual bag check fee in order to open up more overheard compartment space for other passengers
We love gate checking for a few reasons. It is never charged for when it is required and some airlines offer incentives, such as early boarding, if you volunteer to check your bag. Virgin America is one airline that we have consistently gotten free early boarding for gate checking our carry-ons. We also don’t worry too much about anyone pawing through our bags, since the gate-checked bags have been through security with us and aren’t out of sight for long. One other advantage is that you can pick up your bag as you depart from the plane, since they off-load it right in front of the door for you instead of making you walk down to baggage claim.