Trench Coats, Vacuum-Seal Bags and Other Ways to Avoid Airline Fees

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by sobore, Feb 6, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    Let’s face it: Those dreaded airline fees are now as much a part of the traveling experience as long security lines. But that does not necessarily mean that passengers always have to pay them.
    As the airlines come up with ever more inventive fees, travelers are figuring out creative ways to avoid them.

    The fee for checked bags seems to vex passengers the most. To avoid it, some travelers stuff as many items as possible into a carry-on bag and then fight with other passengers for space in the overhead bin.

    Others, like Eileen Ogintz, will drive 50 or 100 miles to an airport served by Southwest Airlines or JetBlue. Southwest makes the first two checked bags free, and JetBlue allows the first bag.

    Mrs. Ogintz was helping her daughter, Melanie, move to Colorado for college in the fall of 2009 and quickly discovered that the price of hauling the baggage across the country was almost as much as buying another ticket. “I would have easily spent hundreds of dollars” getting six bags from Westport, Conn., to Denver, Mrs. Ogintz said. That was when she discovered that Southwest Airlines did not charge for the first two bags.

    So rather than fly out of La Guardia Airport in New York, as she originally planned, Mrs. Ogintz, her husband and daughter drove an extra 25 miles to fly out of Hartford, at the time the closest airport to offer Southwest flights. “We were able to check all six bags for free between the three of us,” she said.

    Mrs. Ogintz, a blogger who specializes in travel, has been writing and campaigning against the fees ever since.

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