An AP article published on July 30, 2008 titled Delta To Double Baggage Fees peaked my attention in the high-season of summer vacations. Starting on Thursday, 7/31/08, ticket purchases for travel starting August 5, 2008 will have this increased fee to check a second bag on domestic flights. Mind you First Class, BusinessElite and Medallion customers (a.k.a. “preferred customers”) can still check up to three bags at NO CHARGE! This occurs all in the name of rising fuel costs. To top it all off, Delta is reviewing a decision made by several other carriers to impose a fee on a customer’s first bag checked.

Those that use to travel with numerous clothing options for each day of vacation for example, may now be faced with a tough decision when preparing for flight reservations. What about families which indulge in souvenirs as ritual when vacationing? Any carrier who is increasing fees for first, second and third bags checked will certainly be looked at more closely when travelers are planning their flights. This may combat rising fuel costs slightly for Delta but may ultimately lose patrons shopping for the better airline carrier baggage fees (i.e. Southwest does not charge for the first and second bag checked per customer). Carriers might want to take the time to perform a total cost of ownership analysis when making such changes to their policies. There may be a better solution than penalizing the travelers who do not pack light!
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Tina Lamanna

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