Airline fees are here to stay. Currently, airlines earn as much as 10 percent of their total revenue through ancillary fees. In 2012, that added up to $27 billion in ancillary fees alone.
Now, the fee structure is evolving and growing. The first round of airline fees could be considered punitive fees. Passengers were charged for checked bags, airlines seat assignments…all the items they had been accustomed to receiving for free. The latest round of airline charges are convenience fees, where passengers have the option to invest in a menu of options that making flying more comfortable.
New fee options include purchasing first-class meals or renting an iPad with movies, and now there also bundled airline fees. American Airlines offers the Choice Essential and Choice Plus fees, where passengers pay $68-$88 for early boarding, a free checked bag and no ticket change fees. For $199, Delta offers the Smart Pack, where the first bag flies free for everyone on the same ticket, priority boarding and 20 percent more miles. United sells baggage plans where you spend $249 and check two bags for free for a year.
Bundled fees appear to be a better deal for travelers, but are they really? Peter Greenberg reports on the fees you should invest in as well as the ones to avoid in his latest CBS This Morning report.
For the latest on travel fees, check out:
- 6 Airline Making the Most Money Off of You
- Peter’s report on The Land of the Fee and the Home of the Delay
- 5 Airline Fees You Can Avoid (and 4 You Can’t)
- Why Airline Fees Are Rising this Summer