December 17, 2012 |
Fees to check bags and change reservations generated $1.6 billion for the nation's largest airlines in July through September, according to new federal data. The total represents a 5% increase over the same period last year, when the nation's airlines collected $1.5 billion from checked bag fees and charges for changing flight reservations, according to the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Airlines began to charge baggage fees and other extra passengers fees about four years ago in response to a decline in demand during the economic recession and a surge in fuel prices.
January 13, 2012 |
Brent Hopkins, a Michigan marketing manager, was so annoyed that a carry-on suitcase cost him $90 in baggage fees on Sprit Airlines that he launched a business to help other passengers sidestep the charges. Florida-based Spirit Airlines introduced in 2010 a fee of up to $45 for carry-on luggage that cannot fit in the space under the seats. The fee met with outrage, including threats from several lawmakers to impose a special tax on revenue collected from such fees. Instead of fuming, Hopkins created CarryOn Free, an online company that manufactures suitcases that fit the exact dimensions of the space under the Spirit seats.
January 26, 2012 |
If airfares seem a little higher than usual, it's not because the airlines have raised their prices. The Department of Transportation's long-awaited new rules on what airlines can advertise as posted ticket prices go into effect Thursday. I think of it as the "no surprises" rule. The biggest change: Published airfares (online, on billboards, in print, over the phone) must include all taxes and fees. The idea is that consumers looking for the lowest airfare won't be misled by super-low prices that increase exponentially after fees and taxes are added on. The rule applies to airlines, ticket agents and online travel booking sites like Expedia, Orbitz, etc. Kayak, however, already publishes the total cost of airfares on its site.
December 14, 2010 |
Fees that may make fliers gnash their teeth proved to be big money for airlines this year. How big? The top 20 carriers made $2.6 billion in baggage fees and $1.7 billion in reservation cancellation or change fees in the first three quarters of 2010, a Bureau of Transportation Statistics report said Monday. So that may mean more fees are on the way. Continental Airlines, for example, rolled out a new optional fee Monday called FareLock that allows you to "lock in" an airfare that you like for three or seven days – for fees that start at $5 and $9, respectively.
December 19, 2009 |
To the frustration of many travelers, the nation's 10 largest airlines have collected about $740 million in baggage fees in the third quarter of this year -- a 111% increase over the same period in 2008. With those kind of numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics, it's hard to tell who is profiting most from the baggage fees -- the airlines that charge to check bags or Southwest Airlines, the lone large carrier that still doesn't make passengers pay to check their first two bags.
May 22, 2008 |
American Airlines announced new baggage fees and other charges Wednesday. Specific rules regarding the new fees can be found at American's website at www.aa.com. -- When do the new and higher fees take effect? The $15 fee for the first checked bag will take effect June 15, but American began imposing other new charges, such as for reservation help and pet handling, Wednesday. -- Why is American raising and adding fees? The airline says the fees are necessary to recover the cost of escalating oil prices, which have tripled its fuel expenses from about 13% of revenue in 2000 to 36% of revenue in the first quarter of this year.
October 4, 2012 |
New airline fees could be coming. That's the take of George Hobica, founder of Airfarewatchdog.com , a low-airfare alert and air travel advice website. Hobica talked with airline industry reporter Hugo Martin about trends in airline fees. The latest comes from Spirit Airlines, whose website lists 72 fees in eight different categories, including baggage fees, seat fees and on-board food and drink fees. Spirit, the first U.S.-based carrier to impose a fee for carry-on bags, this week announced that it will soon begin charging $100 if passengers show up to the gate with a carry-on bag instead of paying ahead of time.
May 15, 2013 |
Baggage fees are still a source of anger, but passengers are more accepting of them, according to a survey on airline satisfaction. In fact, overall satisfaction with air travel has increased to the highest level since 2006, according to the J.D. Power & Associates airline satisfaction study for 2013. Airline satisfaction improved to 695 points on a 1,000-point scale, up 14 points from 2012, according to the study, which measured satisfaction on such factors as cost, in-flight services, boarding and flight crew.
October 4, 2012 |
Faced with higher fuel prices, airlines have come up with a variety of fees to make money on top of airfares. Take Spirit Airlines, whose website lists 72 fees in eight different categories, including baggage fees, seat fees and onboard food and drink fees. Spirit, the first U.S.-based carrier to impose a fee for carry-on bags, this week announced that it will soon begin charging $100 if passengers show up to the gate with a carry-on bag instead of paying ahead of time. That's up from $45. LIVE VIDEO DISCUSSION: Join us at 2 p.m. today Airline industry reporter Hugo Martin will discuss airline fees with George Hobica, founder of Airfarewatchdog.com , a low-airfare alert and air travel advice website.
April 11, 2012 |
It's easier to shop for airfares now that airlines and online travel companies are required to include taxes, nonoptional fees and fuel charges in posted ticket prices. But what's the best way to factor in fees such as checked bags, carry-on bags, second checked bags, seat assignments, change fees and others? Enter NerdWallet . The online personal finance site best known for its credit card comparisons launched a new tool Wednesday that helps travelers find and compare airline fees on U.S. carriers.