Flyers Paying More For Airfares and Fees
Whether you drive or fly, it’s costing you more. Gas prices are skyrocketing, and now airfares are going up, and airlines are tacking on more fees.
Airfares have soared since the beginning of the year. One popular discount airline has resisted the urge to raise prices… until now.
Southwest raises fares
I like Southwest, and try to fly it as much as possible because it doesn’t charge me baggage fees that other airlines gouge customers with. For a family of five, bag fees could cost an extra $600 round-trip (2 bags each, with $25 for the 1st, $35 the 2nd).
But now, Southwest has now joined other airlines, increasing domestic round trip fares by $10, citing the need to offset high fuel prices. It’s the sixth time airlines have raised fares already this year. Farecompare.com says leisure travelers may now be paying $260 for a ticket that cost $200 on January 1.
Here’s my plea to Southwest: “Please don’t join the others and start charging for checked bags. Please.”
Speaking of fees
As fuel prices continue to rise, airlines are looking for ways to pile on more fees. So far, the airlines have looked to boost profits by charging flyers for things such as checked bags, choice seats, snacks and pillows. Now they’re looking to add new fees for things like a seat that reclines more, insurance against weather delaying your flight, speedier security lines and early boarding.
Last year, extra fees brought in an estimated $22 billion for domestic airlines, or 5 percent of the industry’s revenue.
What will they think of next? Pay-to-potty? Oh, I forgot. One budget European airline already came up with that idea to keep flushed with cash. Sorry for the potty humor.