Airline fees are sky high and they’re only on their way up. A recent report from the Government Accountability Office estimates that passengers paid $7.1 billion in checked bag fees and flight changes in 2016. And consumers aren’t happy about it. In fact, a federal appeals court revived a lawsuit against Spirit Airlines by passengers who were victims of unexpected carry-on bag fees. According to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, 22 passengers could sue for breach of contract because, among other things, there were “ambiguities” in the prices the passengers had to pay.
“Gotcha” fees are not unusual and, most of the time, passengers are not even aware that they are falling victim to sneaky billing practices. Here are fees to look for when you travel:
Although some airlines will let you bring a bag for free, others offer basic economy seats that have a per carry-on bag fee if you’re using overhead space.
Cancellation and Change Fee
Changed your travel plans? Pay the airline. Fees can range anywhere from $200 for domestic flights and up to $750 for international flights. The only exception is if you book a non-refundable ticket seven days in advance of your flight. In that case, the U.S. Department of Transportation mandates that you can cancel or change your reservation within 24 hours without paying any fees.
Want to pick your own seat? There’s a fee for that. Some airlines charge for window, aisle or extra leg room seats, while others charge for seat selection if you’re choosing more than 24 hours prior to a flight.
With the exception of Jet Blue, most airlines charge a fee for in-flight Wi-Fi.
Pillows and Blankets
Tired? Chilly? Taking the red-eye and trying to get some sleep? You’ll have to pay if you want a blanket or pillow on certain airlines.
Phone Booking Fees
Most of us book our flights online, but if you’re hoping to talk to a human being and book over the phone, be on the lookout for a fee.
Airlines are not the only ones with hidden fees. Chances are, you’re paying unexpected fees for services like wireless, internet, cable, satellite or home security. Send your monthly bills to BILLSHARK and we will work hard to lower your bill so that you never overpay again.