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Consider Fees Before You Book a Plane Ticket to Get the Best Price

Money Tip: Consider Fees Before You Book a Plane Ticket

If the Winter blues have you dreaming of a Spring break somewhere warm, then it's time to brush up on your airfare-searching-savvy. Airlines were hit with big fuel bills during the first half of 2008 and those costs are still being passed on to customers in the form of fees. Because airlines have changed the way they charge for tickets, passengers need to change the way they think about airfare.

George Hobica of offers a great example: "If Southwest has a fare of $198 round-trip and United has one for $148, and you are checking three bags, then Southwest actually has the lowest fare because Southwest charges nothing for the first two checked bags, whereas United would charge you an additional $165 each way for three." It can pay big to consider fees before making a purchase, so take the time to review baggage fee charts for each airline.


Join The Conversation
T-S T-S 8 years
Where are you going that you're bringing three bags?!
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
this is definitely something to be mindful of. the other piece that i've been thinking about more than usual is the cost for what it'll take for me to GET to the airport since i live in NYC and there are 3 major airports for me to fly out of. aside from the cost of the ticket and baggage, which airport can i drive to and park at for less than it'll cost for me to take a cab/car service etc. these are all the little things that i'm being more mindful about.
emalove emalove 8 years
The extra fees irk me too, Verily...good thing I usually only check one bag.
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
Good to know!
lilkimbo lilkimbo 8 years
I don't typically fly Southwest because it is so inconvenient for me to get to BWI or Dulles, but Reagan is literally in my back yard. (Southwest doesn't fly from Reagan.) But, I'm not a bag-checker, so I'm good. However, I do typically small on the smaller commuter planes, so I wind up gate-checking my bag anyway. They don't charge for it, though!
verily verily 8 years
All the extra fees really really irk me. So I started using Southwest, which tends to have some seriously good deals. They don't have all the creature comforts of competitors like Continental, but these days I've got an iPhone to keep me entertained and food can be carried on from the food court.
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