Aug 2, 2008

READ BAGGAGE FEES OR RISK A $30-80 WRIST SLAP

I don't care what lies your airline carrier smeared around: the new baggage fees have resulting in snarling chaos. Planes bottleneck, as passengers fight to wedge rollerboards in the overhead bins. Attendants wrestle away overlarge suitcases. People wail down the aisles, suddenly aware they've accidentally gate-checked cash, gold and delicate electronics.

Like air travel wasn't vile enough?

And now we can't even sip free water to cool down on some services (boycott US Airways).

I, for one, am supporting kinder, gentler carriers, the ones who don't charge $15 per US domestic flight to carry a bag. As of August 2008, here's the white-hat, black-hat breakdown:

DECENT CHAPS   UTTER ROTTERS
Alaskan   American
Continental   Northwest
Delta   United
Virgin   US Airways

7 comments:

  1. And another thing! Here's what gets me...say you are going to, oh, the beach. Say you want to take your sunscreen. Well, guess what? You can't do carry-on with that amount of liquid. Even if you have just a tiny bag, you've got to check it. Is security in cahoots with this luggage racket or something?

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  2. That chaps my hide too. My irritated hide, in fact, because I flew to AZ this weekend with a carry-on, then had to scrounge unfamiliar and inappropriate grooming products off my mother...

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  3. I will never forget my last flight. In front of me in the security line: Her..about 22, bleach job, fake nails, caked face...the lot. Him...mid 50s...someone else's husband...taking her out for a weekend in Berlin. She carries a Louis Vuitton vanity case. Big security mamma opens case and takes GREAT pleasure in dropping about £600 worth of potions- one by one-into the bin and grinning: "Lost your face there, sunshine?" As Amanda would say: much hilarity ensues.

    Still...the question "Do you have any hair gel on you?" at security will get into the history books...especially when nobody notices the the 5 packets of Anthrax in your wallet!

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  4. Just flew Alaska to Hawaii (the irony is obvious) and we even got a free Mai Tai back in steerage, er... coach. They charge $5 for a meal pack (salty pretzel things are free), or you can spend the $5 on a gin and tonic. Seems like a no-brainer to me.

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  5. Sascha: I can just hear the Home Counties wife shrieking now, "what exactly is this 700-euro credit card charge from Boots Berlin?!?"

    I wish you'd blog, angel: so many great stories wind up on the cutting room floor...

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  6. MK: You coder types are so good at maths. I may have to borrow that formula...

    Alaska remains one of the few hold-outs for courtesy and consideration: I'm booked with them to SF, en-route to Burning Man. Which is a shame, because I'll be in no shape to appreciate – or probably even register – all that great customer service on the way home.

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  7. Fear not: with that balance sheet, US Airways will be in Chapter 7 before Christmas.

    You're going to Burning Man? Wow, can't wait for the stories from there ...

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