I have taken numerous flights over the last few years on charter (holiday) airlines, more particularly in the last 12 months , and on every occasion my party of two people have been overweight baggage-wise to the tune of 20 kilograms. The airlines we have travelled with in the last year include: BY from LGW to FUE, FCA from BRS to TFS, XLA from LGW to NAP, MYT from BRS to NAP, MYT from BRS to REU and 6G from SWS to JER (the only scheduled airline here) - all return flights. In every case, we checked in at least 3 hours before take-off (where possible) due to my flying phobia, and on no occasion have we been questioned over or charged for the excess weight of our luggage. The standard allowance is 20kg.
However, on 17/11/04 we flew from CWL to FUE with BY. As we had pre-booked seats on this early morning flight (07:10), we had a lie-on of sorts (!) and checked in 1 1/2 hours before take-off. We were promptly charged £76 in excess baggage, which is fair enough, we were 19 kilograms overweight. Though it was still a shock at half-five in the morning!!
Anyway, this is my question: "Is it down to the airline, the check-in agent or the airport to decide whether they will charge for excess baggage?". I have found, on a personal note (and from family and friends), that Britannia at CWL are particularly harsh when it comes to excess baggage, although BY at LGW don't bother with looking at the scales.
I have no qualms as to paying (I've got away with it enough times!), but I thought as perhaps our party appear to be under the average weight for passengers this may be the reason that all other airlines have overlooked the issue of my overweight baggage. Do you think this is likely?
And even more, how would you compare the charter airlines' policy to those of scheduled airlines (considering us flight-only passengers pay similar fares)?
Any views on this issue would be very much appreciated!