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Participant Information: Baggage Policy & Gear Check

Information on Baggage and Gear Check


The B.A.A. and public safety officials from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the eight cities and towns along the 26.2-mile course are asking official participants to comply with all security policies, including a no-bag policy. No bags will be allowed in certain areas at or near the start in Hopkinton, at or near the finish in Boston, or along the course. Bags will not be allowed on buses from Boston to Hopkinton, and bags will not be transported from Hopkinton back to Boston. To learn more about participant rules, including allowable and prohibited items on race day, click the button below:



A gear check opportunity on Boston Common will be available on the morning of the Boston Marathon only, allowing official participants to have a change of clothing (shoes, pants, shirt, jacket) at the conclusion of the race. The bag to be used for this purpose will be provided at Number Pick-up by the B.A.A. and will be within your complimentary race packet.

  • The gear check bag is 18 inches wide, 18 inches tall, and has a 4 inch bottom (see gear bag image to the right, click to enlarge).
  • This clear, plastic bag has a drawstring enclosure and the words "Runner Gear Bag" are printed on the bag.
  • You must use this B.A.A.-provided, clear, plastic bag for gear check. No other bags will be accepted.

The gear check area will be located at the Parkman Bandstand on the eastern side of Boston Common (see map to the right, click to enlarge). Gear check tents will be color coded and will correspond to the color of the wave to which you will be assigned (red, white, blue, or yellow). Please locate the appropriate gear check tent. You will receive a gear check tag at Number Pick-up for the purpose of identifying your gear check bag. Note that only you may check your bag; you will not be allowed to have someone check your bag for you.



  • Gear check bags must be checked at Boston Common between 5:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. on Monday, April 20.
  • Gear may be claimed from 12:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Monday, April 20.
  • Please note: we will not allow gear check bags to be checked prior to April 20.
  • Gear check bags that have not been claimed by 6:00 p.m. on Monday, April 20 may be claimed at the Boston Common Hotel and Conference Center at 40 Trinity Place on Tuesday, April 21 and Wednesday, April 22 between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.



At the conclusion of the race, the B.A.A. will provide participants with a Heatsheet® Warmth Retention Cape for warmth. (see heatsheet image to the right, click to enlarge).

Heatsheets® Warmth Retention Cape, made from Thermo-Flect® 2, a waterproof, reflective-insulation fabric, reflects radiant heat and minimizes conductive heat loss (wind chill). This innovative material is lined with a soft inner surface, providing  a lightweight, comfortable solution for hypothermia prevention. The cape is hooded for added protection from the elements and has arm holes which allows participants to be hands-free, enabling them to hold food, water and any other essential items while remaining covered and warm.

B.A.A. Moment 2

1935 John A. Kelley

Born in West Medford, Massachusetts as one of ten children, Kelley ran track and cross-country at Arlington High School in Massachusetts. He did not finish his first Boston Marathon in 1928, but eventually competed in a record 61 Boston Marathons. A legend of the marathon, Kelley won the 1935 and 1945 runnings of the Boston Marathon. He finished in second place at Boston a record seven times. Between 1934 to 1950, he finished in the top five 15 times at Boston, consistently running in the 2:30s. He ran his last full marathon at Boston in 1992 at the age of 84, his 61st start and 58th finish there.