As I mentioned on the blog last week, there were rumors of JetBlue raising its checked baggage fee before the end of the month. Well, today’s the day. The New York-based carrier has upped its checked baggage fees by $5 for the first two pieces of luggage which now will cost $30 for the first bag and $40 for the second. I hope you don't have to check that third bag or more because those rates have jumped from $100 to a whopping $150 per piece. Yikes!
Is $30 For the First Bag the New Industry Standard?
If you've booked your ticket before today for upcoming travel, you'll be in the clear with the old rates. Any tickets booked today onward will be subject to the increased prices. For a breakdown on the new baggage fees, JetBlue has updated their Bag basics page, which can be viewed here.
As I mentioned before, this move might open up the floodgates for other major U.S. carriers to follow suit. While JetBlue was the trendsetting airline only a few years ago promoting its first free checked bag up until 2015, the airline has claimed the rise in fuel prices for its decision to charge for checked bags. These “ancillary profits” as the airline investors like to dub them somehow never seem to come down in price when fuel prices drop. Funny thing.
While JetBlue hasn’t made a drastic change like switching to Basic Economy fares alongside many other carriers, this move might be even worse for customers in the long run. It basically gives carte blanche for its competitors like American, United, and Delta to up their fees as well. It looks like you might have to accept shelling out the extra cash for the benefit of the airlines misplacing your bags as the new normal.
Southwest Airlines and its two free bag policy are looking more and more promising for those who like to travel with everything in tow. Or it might be time to consider signing up for an airline-branded credit card that allows for free checked baggage.