When airlines said that baggage fees were successful, they weren’t kidding. Collectively, they pocketed an extra $1.1 billion in luggage fees in 2008. American and US Airways led the pack — collecting $278 million and $187.1 million in bag fees respectively.
United Airlines kicked off the fun back in February of 2008 when it announced a $25 fee for the second checked bag. In May, while fuel prices soared and airlines started to hurt, American announced that it would add a $15 fee for the first bag, and the flood gates opened.
Now that consumers are used to the fees, there’s really no getting rid of them, though Southwest recently claimed that its lack of fees was helping it gain market share.