"Sounds like a way of getting more money out of people."
Not really - IF FR
implements a pay-to-check-luggage-in policy, it would act as an incentive for passengers not
not take large or much luggage. Accordingly, FR
's fuel bill would be lower - surely a lot lower per day - and it could either pass this cost saving - together with the other cost savings - onto the consumer in the form of lower prices or onto shareholders in the form of higher dividends. If it offered lower prices, more people would travel, because airfares are elastic: if you reduce your prices by 10%, more than 10% more people will travel. If you gave your shareholders a higher return on their investment (i.e. higher dividends), you'd ensure they don't sell-up and go elsewhere. For those passengers who must
take a lot of luggage, like families, they'd be penalised for doing so. In reality, it'd save the firm money by not paying out as much in fuel, while bringing in a bit more income - but I really doubt that FR
would do it merely to gain more revenue.
"Why dont they just put the prices up a bit?"
They use yield management, so fares are higher at particular times, like weekends, during holidays, on morning and late-afternoon/early evening flights during the week, at the last minute, etc. Its fares can be quite to very high during these periods. For example, I would have had to have paid £149.99 each way if I booked a flight between LPL
the day before travelling. FR
generally offers these unbelievably cheap fares to those with complete flexibility, like leisure passengers, the eldery and those unemployed, by offering them on 'sub-otimally timed' flights, like late at night or early morning, or on mid-day flights. Indeed, it's normally always cheaper to fly on a Tuesday or Wednesday, except during those flights aboard which mainly business passengers fly (i.e. morning and late afternoon/evening).
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."