Originally, baggage fees were implemented to off-set the rising cost of jet fuel. Yet, while the cost of fuel has been on the decline since 2009, baggage fees have been on the rise. While there are still a few companies with a heart (thank you, Southwest, for allowing two free checked bags), most airlines really stick it to you when traveling. On average, you can expect to pay $25 for your first check bag (on a domestic flight). If you want a second bag, you’ll have to shell out $35. Taking a third bag can cost up to $150. I sincerely hope you won’t be taking any lengthy vacations that require lots of supplies!
Do you remember the good old days when snacks and drinks used to be free? The crew members would push their little cart up and down the aisle, distributing goodies and refreshments to every single person. These days, they tend to zip right through the cabin. Why? Because of the credit card machine perched precariously atop their cart; people can’t afford to be refreshed anymore. The cost of a snack starts at $2. The cost of a meal can skyrocket up to $10…beverage sold separately.
Do you want to bring Fido – the family fur ball – with you on vacation? You’ll have to pay for his admittance as well. Usually, $125 will get Fido a spot in the cabin. If the service is available, an airline will check your pet for $200.
Unaccompanied Child Service
Sometimes, a family’s budget or schedule just doesn’t allow for everyone to go to grandma’s house. If your son or daughter plans to travel without you, you’ll have to pay an unaccompanied child service fee. Some airlines take pity on the parents and charge $100 per family (that means both brother and sister can fly). Other airlines hike the amount up to $100 per child. Additionally, this rate is usually one way. And sometimes the service is only offered on nonstop flights.
We all know that the comfy, cushy seats in first class come at a premium. But did you know you might be paying extra for your seat in coach? Most airlines attach a fee to seats that are in the bulkhead or emergency exit row. There is also a fee attached to aisle and window seats. Extra leg room is available at a price, as are seats towards the front of the cabin. Other airlines don’t have a specific fee for specific seats; instead, they charge a $10 early check in fee for those wanting to reserve a better seat.
In flight movies used to be all the rage. Just plug in your (free!) headset and enjoy the movie the crew has selected for you. These days, that system is old news. Now, you can select a movie or an episode of your favorite TV show for personal viewing. But…it’s going to cost you. A single TV episode can be $2.00. Full-length movies can be as much as $7.99.
And that’s not all! After you have forked over money for just about everything under the sun, there’s more! Do you want to snuggle up with a pillow and blanket? That will be $7. Do you want a paper ticket? That will be $50. Do you want to book your flight by phone instead of the internet? That will be $25. Need to purchase a ticket at the ticket office? That will be $30. Need to change your reservation? Good luck!
So the moral of the story is: if you want to avoid fees, you’ll have to squish into the center seat while wearing every item of clothing you need for your trip, reading a book with one hand and eating your homemade PBJ sandwich with the other!
To get her travel-fix, blogger Jessamy Adams chooses to periodically relocate to different parts of the country. By keeping her feet on the ground and moving from place to place (check out these Jacksonville movers…they’re great!), she avoids hidden fees!