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Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:09 pm
by TriL1011Star
We flew for DECADES before some CEO got a brilliant idea that they could make even more money off of us by charging for every bag we check, in addition to what we pay for the cost of a ticket, that once INCLUDED up to 2 or 3 checked bags.

Most airlines started charging back in 2010 or so, whenever gas prices were up at $4 a gallon and cited fuel costs as the reason for doing so. Problem is, it's now 2019, and they are STILL charging for it, despite the fact that gas is now half the price, and in fact, airlines in the US have just RAISED the baggage fees within the last year.

In 2017 alone, airlines made 4.5 BILLION dollars....that's BILLION with a B....on checked baggage fees alone. As far as I'm concerned, they are just ripping us off, and there really ought to be a law against the checked baggage fees. 30 years ago so much more was included in the price of your ticket. Meals, checked baggage, blankets, pillows, everything had no extra cost.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:12 pm
by shamrock321
Airlines are business, if they can make money out of charging for checked baggage why wouldn’t they? Checking in baggage costs the airlines money any, screening, baggage handling staff etc.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:12 pm
by mrwhistler
In 2017 alone, airlines made 4.5 BILLION dollars....that's BILLION with a B....on checked baggage fees alone.


I feel like you answered your own question here.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:17 pm
by FriscoHeavy
TriL1011Star wrote:
We flew for DECADES before some CEO got a brilliant idea that they could make even more money off of us by charging for every bag we check, in addition to what we pay for the cost of a ticket, that once INCLUDED up to 2 or 3 checked bags.

Most airlines started charging back in 2010 or so, whenever gas prices were up at $4 a gallon and cited fuel costs as the reason for doing so. Problem is, it's now 2019, and they are STILL charging for it, despite the fact that gas is now half the price, and in fact, airlines in the US have just RAISED the baggage fees within the last year.

In 2017 alone, airlines made 4.5 BILLION dollars....that's BILLION with a B....on checked baggage fees alone. As far as I'm concerned, they are just ripping us off, and there really ought to be a law against the checked baggage fees. 30 years ago so much more was included in the price of your ticket. Meals, checked baggage, blankets, pillows, everything had no extra cost.


No, there doesn’t need to be a law. That’s the last thing we need. It’s a business and they are there to make money. If you don’t like it, fly Southwest.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:25 pm
by GalaxyFlyer
More government incentives at work—tickets are taxed, baggage fees are not. I usually check my bag(s) as $25 is worth it to me, if not to you, don’t check a bag.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:25 pm
by Nomadd
Maybe you should report those airlines who hold a gun to your head, forcing you to buy their services to the police.
While you're at it, try using some of the math classes you slept through and figure out what the same ticket between two cities costs in real dollars today compared to the mid 60s.
And be sure to use lots of caps in your response. That always helps your credibility.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 3:06 pm
by PatrickZ80
TriL1011Star wrote:
We flew for DECADES before some CEO got a brilliant idea that they could make even more money off of us by charging for every bag we check, in addition to what we pay for the cost of a ticket, that once INCLUDED up to 2 or 3 checked bags.

Most airlines started charging back in 2010 or so, whenever gas prices were up at $4 a gallon and cited fuel costs as the reason for doing so. Problem is, it's now 2019, and they are STILL charging for it, despite the fact that gas is now half the price, and in fact, airlines in the US have just RAISED the baggage fees within the last year.

In 2017 alone, airlines made 4.5 BILLION dollars....that's BILLION with a B....on checked baggage fees alone. As far as I'm concerned, they are just ripping us off, and there really ought to be a law against the checked baggage fees. 30 years ago so much more was included in the price of your ticket. Meals, checked baggage, blankets, pillows, everything had no extra cost.


The fact that they started charging for checked bags had nothing to do with the gas prices, those were just used as an excuse.

The real reason was the upcoming of the LCCs and their "bare products". It was the LCCs that realized they could make their tickets cheaper by stripping it off all of the amenities that were included with other airlines. And that seemed to be what customers wanted, because in those days LCCs were by far the fastest growing airlines making more profit than the traditional full-service airlines.

Airports charge airlines for each checked bag they have to process. Before the LCCs were around, those costs were just accepted as an unavoidable part of the costs of operating an airline. They incorporated the costs for checked luggage in the ticket prices. It was the LCCs that started to think different. The key to running a successful LCC are low ticket prices, so if checked luggage was making the ticket prices more expensive then it was time to cut out the checked luggage from the ticket price. I believe Ryanair was the first airline to do so, others followed suit.

There appeared to be demand for cheap tickets without all the amenities of a full-service airline, LCCs were growing very fast. Full-service airlines couldn't compete with that, despite the fact that they offered a higher class product which included everything. But their ticket prices were just far too high. They had to be to cover the costs of their higher class product. However a lot of passengers decided they didn't need all of those amenities offered by full-service airlines, so they booked a cheaper ticket on an LCC instead.

And that's still valid. Passengers still don't need all amenities, they still opt for the lowest price. And one way to make the ticket price cheaper is by excluding checked luggage. Even the full-service airlines have realized that by now.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:12 pm
by klm617
shamrock321 wrote:
Airlines are business, if they can make money out of charging for checked baggage why wouldn’t they? Checking in baggage costs the airlines money any, screening, baggage handling staff etc.


But what choice do you have when traveling it's a charge that for most is unavoidable. Who is going to travel without their belongings.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:47 pm
by T18
Nomadd wrote:
While you're at it, try using some of the math classes you slept through and figure out what the same ticket between two cities costs in real dollars today compared to the mid 60s.
And be sure to use lots of caps in your response. That always helps your credibility.


So I found an image of a New York to Shannon Ticket from 1957, Price show was $371. Adjusted for inflation that is $3,389.95. A ticket right now on Aer Lingus JFK to SNN economy is $950 and first class would run $3878.

Sadly the images quality is low so I can't really see the class that ticket was for.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 8:22 pm
by johns624
klm617 wrote:
shamrock321 wrote:
Airlines are business, if they can make money out of charging for checked baggage why wouldn’t they? Checking in baggage costs the airlines money any, screening, baggage handling staff etc.


But what choice do you have when traveling it's a charge that for most is unavoidable. Who is going to travel without their belongings.
You could drive...

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 9:24 pm
by PatrickZ80
klm617 wrote:
But what choice do you have when traveling it's a charge that for most is unavoidable. Who is going to travel without their belongings.


You'd be surprised, plenty of people do. Specially for a short trip, a lot of folks travel with hand luggage only. I've done so plenty of times, in fact I hardly ever check luggage when I fly. The last time was maybe 10 years ago or something like that.

Everything is avoidable if you want to, you just got to look how you're going to solve it.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:56 am
by winginit
klm617 wrote:
shamrock321 wrote:
Airlines are business, if they can make money out of charging for checked baggage why wouldn’t they? Checking in baggage costs the airlines money any, screening, baggage handling staff etc.


But what choice do you have when traveling it's a charge that for most is unavoidable. Who is going to travel without their belongings.


So because it's a necessity the passenger shouldn't have to pay for it? What exactly are you saying here?

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 4:16 am
by kimimm19
Don't expect any sympathy from the capitalist crowd.

There's a reason why air travel is the industry where customers despise their service providers the most.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 4:43 am
by Pudelhund
klm617 wrote:
shamrock321 wrote:
Airlines are business, if they can make money out of charging for checked baggage why wouldn’t they? Checking in baggage costs the airlines money any, screening, baggage handling staff etc.


But what choice do you have when traveling it's a charge that for most is unavoidable. Who is going to travel without their belongings.


You can bring a carry-on for free on basically every main cabin fare these days. A carry on can last me a week. Otherwise pay up or fly a bundled airline or just take the bus if you are so cheap. Air fare is very inexpensive these days and this seems like a strange and childish thing to complain about.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:16 pm
by citationjet
Pudelhund wrote:

You can bring a carry-on for free on basically every main cabin fare these days. A carry on can last me a week. Otherwise pay up or fly a bundled airline or just take the bus if you are so cheap. Air fare is very inexpensive these days and this seems like a strange and childish thing to complain about.


Another option is to get an airline credit card (usually with a annual fee of $99). This allows one free checked bag for the card holder and one free bag for one passenger (if booked together). One round trip for two people can break even on the credit card annual fee. Fly more than that and you come out ahead. With Alaska Airlines credit card I get free bag fees and I also get one free round trip ticket to any of their destinations for free every year.

Also, international flights do not have checked luggage fees.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:09 am
by flyingclrs727
citationjet wrote:
Pudelhund wrote:

You can bring a carry-on for free on basically every main cabin fare these days. A carry on can last me a week. Otherwise pay up or fly a bundled airline or just take the bus if you are so cheap. Air fare is very inexpensive these days and this seems like a strange and childish thing to complain about.


Another option is to get an airline credit card (usually with a annual fee of $99). This allows one free checked bag for the card holder and one free bag for one passenger (if booked together). One round trip for two people can break even on the credit card annual fee. Fly more than that and you come out ahead. With Alaska Airlines credit card I get free bag fees and I also get one free round trip ticket to any of their destinations for free every year.

Also, international flights do not have checked luggage fees.


Not on the first bag. Depending on the route and the airline, many airlines charge for a second international bag. United charges $100 for a second international bag. That becomes an issue for my wife's annual trips home. Merely adding a round trip on the 200 mile leg between CRP and IAH adds about $500 to her IAH-IST-ODS round trip. Well that's better than it used to be when it was over $1,000 extra to fly from our home airport. When you consider that TK allows 2 free bags between North America and Europe, it's really about a $600 premium to fly from our home airport rather than driving to IAH. Since her VFR trips always involve carrying 2 checked bags, we drive to IAH. Due to United's scheduling, I can actually leave my house in Corpus Christi later to head IAH than I would have to leave to catch the UA flight from CRP.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:28 pm
by wv399
flyingclrs727 wrote:
citationjet wrote:
Pudelhund wrote:

You can bring a carry-on for free on basically every main cabin fare these days. A carry on can last me a week. Otherwise pay up or fly a bundled airline or just take the bus if you are so cheap. Air fare is very inexpensive these days and this seems like a strange and childish thing to complain about.


Another option is to get an airline credit card (usually with a annual fee of $99). This allows one free checked bag for the card holder and one free bag for one passenger (if booked together). One round trip for two people can break even on the credit card annual fee. Fly more than that and you come out ahead. With Alaska Airlines credit card I get free bag fees and I also get one free round trip ticket to any of their destinations for free every year.

Also, international flights do not have checked luggage fees.


Not on the first bag. Depending on the route and the airline, many airlines charge for a second international bag. United charges $100 for a second international bag. That becomes an issue for my wife's annual trips home. Merely adding a round trip on the 200 mile leg between CRP and IAH adds about $500 to her IAH-IST-ODS round trip. Well that's better than it used to be when it was over $1,000 extra to fly from our home airport. When you consider that TK allows 2 free bags between North America and Europe, it's really about a $600 premium to fly from our home airport rather than driving to IAH. Since her VFR trips always involve carrying 2 checked bags, we drive to IAH. Due to United's scheduling, I can actually leave my house in Corpus Christi later to head IAH than I would have to leave to catch the UA flight from CRP.



Depending on the fare class. Delta charges $60 for the first bag on international flights booked in Basic Economy.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:41 pm
by wv399
TriL1011Star wrote:
We flew for DECADES before some CEO got a brilliant idea that they could make even more money off of us by charging for every bag we check, in addition to what we pay for the cost of a ticket, that once INCLUDED up to 2 or 3 checked bags.

Most airlines started charging back in 2010 or so, whenever gas prices were up at $4 a gallon and cited fuel costs as the reason for doing so. Problem is, it's now 2019, and they are STILL charging for it, despite the fact that gas is now half the price, and in fact, airlines in the US have just RAISED the baggage fees within the last year.

In 2017 alone, airlines made 4.5 BILLION dollars....that's BILLION with a B....on checked baggage fees alone. As far as I'm concerned, they are just ripping us off, and there really ought to be a law against the checked baggage fees. 30 years ago so much more was included in the price of your ticket. Meals, checked baggage, blankets, pillows, everything had no extra cost.


For decades, airlines drifted from boom to bust, losing more than they made in good times during the bad. 2010 wasn't too far removed from the post - 9/11 bankruptcies of US, UA, NW, and DL. Plus it was in the midst of the 2008 financial crisis. They needed additional reliable revenue streams, and found one in baggage fees.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:45 pm
by Pudelhund
wv399 wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
citationjet wrote:

Another option is to get an airline credit card (usually with a annual fee of $99). This allows one free checked bag for the card holder and one free bag for one passenger (if booked together). One round trip for two people can break even on the credit card annual fee. Fly more than that and you come out ahead. With Alaska Airlines credit card I get free bag fees and I also get one free round trip ticket to any of their destinations for free every year.

Also, international flights do not have checked luggage fees.


Not on the first bag. Depending on the route and the airline, many airlines charge for a second international bag. United charges $100 for a second international bag. That becomes an issue for my wife's annual trips home. Merely adding a round trip on the 200 mile leg between CRP and IAH adds about $500 to her IAH-IST-ODS round trip. Well that's better than it used to be when it was over $1,000 extra to fly from our home airport. When you consider that TK allows 2 free bags between North America and Europe, it's really about a $600 premium to fly from our home airport rather than driving to IAH. Since her VFR trips always involve carrying 2 checked bags, we drive to IAH. Due to United's scheduling, I can actually leave my house in Corpus Christi later to head IAH than I would have to leave to catch the UA flight from CRP.



Depending on the fare class. Delta charges $60 for the first bag on international flights booked in Basic Economy.


Then don’t buy the basic economy fare. It is specifically a bare bones fare for people who don’t need all the standard perks people have been used to on mainline carriers. Why do people have these asinine entitled views where they think that buying the cheapest things means they should get all the things they specifically didn’t pay for? You don’t go to a restaurant, order a dish because it was cheaper than the multi-course meal option, but then demand the other dishes for free.

Re: Why do airlines still need to charge for checked bagage?

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 10:03 pm
by PSAatSAN4Ever
Those that do not remember the volatility of the airline market in the U.S. since deregulation need to examine this history: it is like a roller coaster with extreme highs and unbelievable lows, all subject to forces beyond their control. Airlines MUST make money to stay in business, and by "unbundling" certain services, they ensure a steady stream of revenue even when times are tough.

The main reason, however, that these "fees" are assessed independently of the airfare is simple: as "ancillary revenue" fees, they are not subject to taxes. Translation: All for the airlines, none for anyone else. It is the same reason Las Vegas hotels offer really cheap room fees, only to have the customer charged "a $75 per day 'resort fee' for things like the pool". Yeah, in December, I'm charged for a pool I can't use. But I have no choice in the matter - it is not optional. But for the hotel, they only pay taxes on the room rate, not the resort fee.