OK, I learned a long time ago to never say never and I’ll put that into practice for this post. That said, this little tidbit from CNNMoney.com should put to rest any inkling of an idea some have that those annoying little fees to check even one bag are going away anytime soon. Baggage check fees earned over $1 billion dollars for the airlines last year, and that accounts for only part of the year as the fees were not introduced until well into the year.
I predicted they were here to stay when American’s move to charge for the first checked bag was broadly matched across the industry, and continue to stand by that prediction. Here’s another one for you. Southwest will not be able to continue to ignore the revenue stream these fees are generating. Does that mean Southwest bites the legacy bullet and starts charging for everything under the sun? No. But I expect to see some revision to Southwest’s “no baggage fees” policy sometime in the next 12 to 18 months.
In honor of the airline industry’s newfound love of charging you for everything, I’m even creating a new category here at MJ on Travel for easy indexing and searching of our favorite new topic, “Ancillary Revenue.”