Pack light when flying!

June 30, 2008 3:20:18 PM PDT
Size matters when it comes to the bags you bring onto the plane with you. If they're too big, it may cost you. It's just the latest in a number of changes that airlines have been making to deal with rising fuel costs.

So many new surcharges are popping up many consumers are confused so here's a breakdown of what to expect the next time you head to the airport.

More and more airlines are already starting to charge a fee for your first checked bag and they're raising their fees for overweight luggage. Starting July 9th, passengers booking tickets on US Airways will be charged $15 for their first checked bag and $25 for a second bag.

And if you're thinking about overstuffing your carry-on, think again, US Airways told Action News it will have more agents patrolling kiosk check-ins to make sure passengers are following regulations.

Other airlines also plan to deploy extra carry-on cops. They'll look for violators and make them check on or pay for oversized bags.

And US Airways new beverage fee is one that many passengers find more insulting. Starting August 1st, a soda will cost you $2, you'll have to pay $1 for coffee and bottled water will cost you $2.

And you may not even realize a fee you're being charged on Northwest Airlines. The airline charges for so-called premium seats, coach seats in an exit row or next to a window or aisle.

Last summer AirTran started charging a seat assignment fee, $6 for a regular coach seat and $20 for the exit row although you can take a gamble and pick your seat for no fee when you check in online 24 hours before your flight.

And there's more bad news, the nation's six leading airlines have announced they're trimming flights in major hubs and cutting off service to dozens of discount destinations many of them in Florida.

United will no longer offer service to Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.

American Airlines' shuttle service, American Eagle, is discontinuing service to Harrisburg as well as Albany and Providence, Rhode Island.

Most of the cuts will take effect this fall so travel experts suggest you book early for Thanksgiving and beyond or risk not getting a flight at all.

Fee Breakdown:

Northwest Airlines Baggage Fees
$25 = second checked bag
$100 = for three or more checked bags
$50 = overweight bags greater than 50 pounds

Northwest Airlines "Coach Choice" Fees
Affects preferred seat assignments including exit, aisle and window seats
$5-$35 = Domestic seats
$50 = International seats for trans-Pacific and Eastbound trans-Atlantic travel
$25 = from Japan to other Asia destinations, Guam, Saipan or Hawaii

Northwest Airlines Snack Fees
$3-$10

US Airways Baggage Fees
Booking for travel on July 9th and after:
$15 = first checked bag
$25 = second checked bag

US Airways Beverage Service Fees
Begins August 1st
$2 = soda
$2 = bottled water
$1 = coffee

AirTran Baggage Fees
$10 online or $20 at airport = second checked bag

AirTran Seat Assignment Fees
$6 = regular coach seat
$20 = exit row
Check online 24 hours in advance to pick your seat for no fee

American Airlines Baggage Fees
$15 = first checked bag
$25 = second checked bag

American Airlines Shuttle Service, American Eagle, has cut all flights to Harrisburg

For more information, including airlines with future extra fees see below:
United Airlines
US Airways
American Airlines
Delta
Northwest Airlines
Southwest Airlines
AirTran
Continental Airlines
Spirit Airlines


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