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Frontier Airlines Chooses the Dark Side, Begins Charging for Carry-on Bags

April 28, 2014 at 12:15 PM | by | ()

Baggage fees turn six years old this July. That's no cause for celebration, but travelers have gradually grown accustomed to forking over an extra $25+ to stow bags in a plane's hold. The real indignation comes of what will be the fourth anniversary of carry-on baggage fees, initiated in August 2010 by Spirit Airlines.

Spirit now charges passengers $35+ for a carry-on bag, and their success has inspired another American airline to join in the collection of these extra dollars. Frontier has just announced the start of carry-on baggage fees, beginning with tickets purchased on or after today.

To put the evil of carry-on baggage fees into perspective, not even the infamous nickel-and-dimers of Ryanair have attempted them yet.

Granted, Frontier does says that in exchange for these new fees, the base airfare will decrease by an average of 12%. In the end, that's simply a bait-and-switch for travelers who will see a lower advertised airfare, purchase it, and then be stuck paying for extras such as seat selection, carry-on bags and checked bags.

Frontier carry-on fee breakdown:*

· Pay for your carry-on online during purchase: $20
· Pay for your carry-on online after purchase, but before flight day: $30
· Pay for your carry-on at airport check-in: $35
· Pay for your carry-on at the gate: $50
· Book your flight on anything other than FlyFrontier.com in "Basic Fare" class and have a carry-on: $100

*View full Frontier fee breakdown for carry-on bags on their official site.

Oh, and there's seat assignments fees now:

The AP comments on Frontier's other new fee:

Seat assignments — even for the dreaded middle seat — cost an extra $3 for those who buy while booking online; $8 at check-in. If passengers don't pay extra, Frontier will assign them whatever seats are leftover.

For "select" seats, which are just in the front half of the plane, Frontier will charge an extra $5 to $15 per flight, depending on when they are purchased. "Stretch" seats with an extra 5 to 7 inches of legroom — including those in the exit row — will cost $15 to $50 per flight segment, depending on the distance flown. Connecting passengers would have to pay each fee twice.

In closing, we refer to this May 2013 satirical article from The Onion, which contains this little tip: "...the FAA is officially recommending people pay the extra $40 for a ticket on another airline, adding that the extra money is worth not being made to feel like you are getting jerked around at every goddamn turn." They may have been talking about Spirit then, but same-same now.

So, how much longer until Frontier starts selling cans of wine?

[Photo: Jaunted]

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