When I heard about United raising their second checked bag fee to $50 this morning, I wasn’t even going to post about it. The fact is that I can’t keep up with the airlines because they keep making these changes and they’re killing us slowly instead of hitting us with all the bad news at once (first charge for the second bag, then the first bag, then raising the costs, etc.). Dan Webb made a good post on the subject this morning, with a very accurate conclusion, especially for non-elites:
Oh well. All I can say is if you are planning to take a couple of bags with you on your next trip, check out all of the fees before you make that booking to determine your final cost. It could change the airline you end up flying.
‘Tis far too true, sadly. Anyway, I’m not necessarily opposed to these bag fees, and it’s not just because I have status with a couple of airlines. That being said, I think we’ll remember this as the “good ‘ole days.” I’m willing to bet we’ll see the fees for the first bag go up to $50+ across the board (maybe with the exception of Southwest and our other emerging premium carriers) and the fee for the second bag to go up to $100+ in the near future. Also, I wouldn’t be surprised if they slowly start charging elites, giving them a discount to make them feel like they’re getting a good deal.
Anyway, that’s all fine and dandy. What I really enjoyed was ALPA’s reaction to this. Basically they’re starting a petition against the increased fees. Some may recall that ALPA did the same thing with the meals in international coach, so it seems like they think they were responsible for winning that battle. I feel they’re losing a bit of credibility with this, since there’s no way UA will be reversing this, so it makes these petitions look utterly worthless. Furthermore, I doubt they’ll be getting much support since most passengers that would be savvy enough to visit GlennTilton.com are probably already elites and wouldn’t be as passionate about this as they are about meals on international flights. While UA is charging the most for bags altogether, they aren’t the shocking leader they were with the meal game.
Still, UA has been getting a LOT of bad press lately.