Just about everything on an airplane that used to be part of the ticket price is now considered an “upgrade.” Now United Airlines is offering regular customers a chance to buy subscriptions that cover a year’s worth of checked bags and access to less-uncomfortable Economy Plus seats. [More]
Feeling lighter in the wallet when you travel? It’s no wonder — in 2012, U.S. airlines raked in a record $6 billion in baggage and change fees from passengers. That’s higher than any other year since such fees became de rigueur five years ago. Oh, and it’s going to keep piling up, because airlines are having fun swimming around in the piles of money they’ve made off such fees. [More]
In spite of the fact that Southwest Airlines is now one of the largest airlines in the country, it still has a reputation among some consumers of being a plucky upstart that always offers cheaper fares than its old-school competitors, especially for business travelers. But a new study claims that Southwest passengers’ savings often depends on whether or not they check their bags. [More]
Hours after announcing a $29 million settlement over its drink voucher program, Southwest Airlines revealed plans to add $300 million in new and increased fees, along with a policy change that will certainly irk some frequent Southwest travelers. [More]
Based on some of the outfits I’ve seen at the airport — really? Wearing five-inch stiletto boots with an infinite amount of lacing is a good idea? — plenty of travelers love being stylish when they’re on the go. But if you don’t care how you look and want to avoid paying fees to check baggage or beat weight restrictions on said bags, you should consider the Mr. Potato Head ensemble you can achieve with the Jaktogo. [More]
It’s not hard to believe that some fliers, sick of waiting at the baggage carousel for their luggage and then hauling it out through the airport and to their destination, might be willing to pay to have someone else do the schlepping for them. Now, American Airlines is hoping that enough people are willing to pay at least $29.95 for a service that just does just that.
Our friends over at NerdWallet are always coming up with useful, easy-to-use tools that sift and collate financial information that is normally scattered in a lot of different places. Most of these tools involve credit cards and banking, but they’ve recently opened a travel section. A handy new tool on the site lets you calculate the fees that different airlines charge for the same options, such as checked baggage, rebooking, or unaccompanied minor tickets. This makes it easier to compare airfares that might seem cheap before you start piling on fees.
With so many people lining up at the airport today and tomorrow to fly home to stuff their stomachs with, well… stuffing, one U.S. Senator has introduced two pieces of legislation aimed at reining in the checked bag fees charged by airlines.
Fees for checked bags vary wildly, from absolutely nothing to arm-and-a-leg-and-an-ear. And according to a new round-up of fees from the various carriers, you might need to throw another limb in there if you’re checking an oversize bag on your international flight.
If any of you had some sort of pipe dream that there might be a day when airlines wouldn’t charge ancillary fees for services that used to be included in the ticket price, U.S. Airways CEO Doug Parker has made it clear the charges aren’t going anywhere because they benefit everyone in the long run.
Recently Delta caught attention because in 2010 it earned the most revenue from baggage fees, $952 million, of all the airlines. But when you compare it to their total revenue, they’re in the low-middle of the pack, with Spirit coming out on top. Let’s look at a chart!
Even though a new rule is about to kick in that refunds airline baggage fees for any traveler whose luggage vanishes forever, New York Senator Chuck Schumer thinks it’s not enough and that airlines should be reimbursing fees even if you get your bags back a day or two later.
The scales at airport check-ins take a beating. Bag after bag, rollies, Louis Vuitons, and duffles filled with too many clothes get put on and off, all day long. Usually the magic number is 50 lbs, and after that, you have to pay a fee. Rules are rules, but in order to fairly enforce them, the scales have to be accurate. Oftentimes, they’re not, the result of lax maintenance.
The Department of Transportation released its final numbers for airline baggage fee revenue from 2010 and Delta has sent a very loud message to the rest of the industry: Y’all got a lot of catching up to do.
A video is burning up the interwebs where a couple of Army soldiers tell how Delta charged 14 guys in their unit $200 a pop for checking a fourth bag, running up $2800 in fees. The soldiers are upset because even though standard Delta policy is to allow the military up to three bags for free, their orders said they were allowed four bags. Now they have to submit receipts to get their fees waived. At first it sounds like a slap in the face but other soldiers have chimed to say it’s really not the drama it’s been made out to be and it happens all the time.
Since Delta began charging fees for checked bags — $25 for the initial piece on domestic flights; $35 for a second — the airline has been offering $2-3 discounts to travelers who prepaid those fees online instead of at the airport. Not anymore.
It’s sort of sad that the Department of Transportation actually had to force airlines to refund bag fees if they lose your baggage — but whatever, let’s not dwell.