We hate to say we told you so, but the airlines are not done with new fees. US Airways has raised the fee for checked bags weighing over 50 pounds, from the previous $70 each way to $90. It's also hiked the fee for bags weighing from 71 pounds to the upper limit of 100 pounds from the previous $120 to $175. In addition, the fee for a third and each additional checked bag is going up from $100 to $125 per bag each way. But wait (or is that weight?), there's more. The fee for "oversized" bags has also jumped. For bags with overall dimensions (width plus height plus depth) over 62 inches (up to a maximum allowed of 80 inches) the old fee was $100 per bag each way (that's in addition to any fee for the bag itself plus weight); the new fee is $175 per bag. Is US Air trying to tell us that they don't want our heavy and oversized bags?
The new charges are for tickets purchased after February 1, 2011 or for those traveling after March 1, 2011.
More than ever, this means pack light or, if you can't, ship don't schlepp! FedEx Ground and UPS Ground service will cost you less if your bag is heavy, especially if you're traveling over a shorter distance. As predicted earlier, we wouldn't be suprirsed to see the airlines impose fees based on distance traveled and not just weight.
The real question now is will other airlines follow suit? We are afraid they will. As they do, we'll keep our airline checked bag fee chart updated.