Passengers hoping to save money by flying onÂ Spirit Airlines will now face $100 fines if they decide to bring hand luggage onÂ board.
The budget airline, which is often consideredÂ the American equivalent to Ryan Air, announced that they will be dramaticallyÂ increasing the fees that they charge passengers when they either check or carryÂ on any bags to their flights.
The company has been charging all of itsÂ passengers for luggage, though the fees are smaller if the passengers thinkÂ ahead and pay the fees online before they travel.
Starting November 6, just in time for theÂ busy holiday travel season, both organized passengers and for those who leaveÂ the fees until the moment they arrive at the gate will have to pay increasedÂ fees.
Prior to the fee change, passengers wouldÂ have to pay $45 per carry on bag if they waited until they got to the gate; nowÂ they will be faced with a $100 bill- more than double the prior fee.
If they pay for said carry on bag at theÂ airport counter or ticket kiosk, however, their fee will be halved to $50, whichÂ is still $10 more than the prior fee.
In an effort to off-set costs, the airlineÂ has charged for every aspect of passengers luggage- from the number of bags theyÂ check, to the varying weight of their overweight luggage.
Surfboards, bags that weigh between 71 and 99Â pounds, and bags that are longer than 62 linear inches all accrue a fee of $100Â or more.
The same goes for a passenger’s third, fourthÂ or fifth checked bags.
While the increase will undoubtedly help theÂ airline with profits, a spokesman told Nasdaq that the company has approachedÂ the change that rewards passengers for planning ahead in hopes that they willÂ not be stuck with the highest fees.
‘Spirit offers our customers multipleÂ opportunities to avoid this unnecessary fee and save money,’ Tony LefebreÂ said.Â
‘By planning ahead and paying for bags beforeÂ getting to the boarding gate, our customers are saving time at the airport andÂ speeding up the boarding process. When our customers choose these time-saving,Â self-service options, our costs go down, and we can pass those savings along toÂ our customers.’
The price increase comes as little surpriseÂ as the financial struggles of the airline industry are well known.
Higher fuel prices, bankruptcies, and fewerÂ travellers spending money on travel during a down economy have all played theirÂ part in hurting the companies bottom lines.
The news of the Spirit increases comes a dayÂ after American Airlines announced that they grounded ten planes in order toÂ re-examine their safety capabilities because two flights made emergency landingsÂ due to rows of seats being loose mid-air.
Source: The Daily Mail