This should be interesting…I was just reading in a magazine that here in the U.S., Sprit Airlines is going to start charging its customers $10 per checked bag in addition to the ticket price. I would imagine that it is only a matter of time before the other airlines follow suit. Southwest Airlines is going to start charging a fee for an assigned seat, and even though I don’t think this is something any airline should charge for, I would pay for it because if you have ever stood around in the cattle line that is the Southwest waiting area you know just how bad it can get. Most airlines already charge you for food that used to be free, so starting to charge per bag checked would not surprise me in the least. My main issue with this, besides the extra cost, is that people already try to bring everything on the plane with them, which slows down both the boarding and deplaning process. Aer Lingus already charges 5 to 8 euros for checked bags on flights between Ireland and the United Kingdom.
In addition to this little bit of news, British Airways is about to drop the weight limit on its checked bags to 51 pounds. I fly AA pretty much exclusively in the U.S. and their weight limit is 50 pounds right now and while I have flown BA during my overseas business trips, I never ran in to an issue before. But I do know that my bags (especially during winter when traveling to see family) always weigh around 40-50 pounds, so I hope that AA does not adopt this policy as well and lower theirs even more.
Along with such big increases in fees, taxes and an overall pain in the ass feeling at the airport, these airlines are out of their minds to make it even more difficult for customers to fly. People hate the airport and flying in general, so starting to charge them to check a bag is going to result in lost fliers and possibly more rail travel. If we had a high speed rail system in this country, I would use it all the time instead of flying.