U.S. Orders Airlines to State Fees More Clearly | New York Times by SUSAN STELLIN | Very interesting article about US Airlines and the extra hidden FEES. I relate to this story very much since, just yesterday I was booking a flight for myself on SPIRIT Airlines turning into quite a frustrating and disappointing experience. The government plans to announce a new set of passenger protections on Wednesday aimed primarily at travelers’ growing frustration over airline fees.
I was booking my flight from New York City to Miami International Airport. Price promoted by Spirit Airlines on an email BLAST…. fares from USD 9. I am a travel agent, and I am not fool of course, so I knew the story behind this. But I said let’s do a little exercise and give it a try, so I went along with it and did it. I went through all the booking process, passing promotion after promotion, extras after extras and so forth. Since I know in advance that I have to attend a conference in Ft. Lauderdale next month I had the dates and was ready to book. FYI lower fare on the competition USD 185 including taxes.
Logged into Spirit Airlines site and started with a base fare of USD 47 for the New York / Miami segment and USD 67 for the Miami / New York segment. The outbound and inbound from/to La Guardia Airport, which let’s be honest, is not the most accessible, convenient or modern airport in the US. Total fare before taxes USD 114. Taxes were around USD 37,40. Subtotal = USD 151,50. So I said to myself… OK I am saving USD 30 isshhhh… now here is where the trick begins and you start adding up without even realizing. Check IN Baggage USD 28 each way (total on Round Trip base USD 56) OH and that if you do it online, because if you do it at the airport it almost doubles. Seat assignment from USD 10 on each way, depending on the row and group number, so another USD 20. Food and Beverages, of course there is no food served on the plane and they measure the water or drinks on board so let’s say you spend another USD 30 in food and drinks round trip at the airport. The grand total now comes to USD 257,40. NOW were you aware of this when you went for the from USD 9 per segment marketing campaign? I don’t think so. In the end I booked with the competition the USD 185 fare…. but hey I was fooled again, since now I found out that I have to pay USD 25 each way for Check IN baggage plus my food (averaging USD 80) so my total now is USD 265. Of course that once on board they provide you with everything Headphones (USD 2 ha ha ha which are yours to keep if they last through out the flight), Pillows or Blankets (USD 10 each and we will turn the air conditioning on to make sure you freeze), WiFi (USD 12)… and so forth. Be careful now, because there are rumors that anytime soon they will begin charging for using the bathrooms, oxygen masks, life vests, seat belts and guess what breathing… Have a GREAT FLIGHT. !!! CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends
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