Yet Another Reason to Hate Airlines

Spirit Airlines drank some Kool Aid and decided to charge passengers for carry-on bags that do not fit under the seat. The fee will only apply to bags placed in the overhead bin. “Bring less; pay less. It’s simple,” Spirit’s Chief Operating Officer Ken McKenzie said in a statement. (Which by the way beats their first attempt at the slogan: Bring less, pay less, fuck you.)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, although this time I’ll say it differently. When I was a kid, I absolutely loved everything about flying. After taking someone to the airport, my family would walk to the window and we’d watch (from the gate) as our loved one’s plane taxied out to the runway and would stay until we saw that plane leave the ground and take off into the sky. When I’d actually get to fly, I looked forward to it. I’d pick out a good magazine, try to get a pillow, and look forward to some pretzels and a nice drink.

What a difference a few (a few, plus) years will do to one’s outlook. Today, I absolutely HATE flying. There’s is simply not a single thing about the experience I enjoy. From sitting in seats where I simply cannot sit comfortably, to dealing with flight attendant attitude; the plane ride is less enjoyable than a ride on the city bus. And, just before anyone comments… it’s not my width that makes the seat uncomfortable. I’m only 6 foot, and I simply cannot fit in the seats. My knees constantly get hit by the seat infront of me, and should that person recline– well, my seat transports my ass to the 4th level of hell. And that’s just the plane! Between the TSA and whatever Airport Authority controls the local airport, the pre-flight experience is even worse.

Anyway… these new fees from Spirit Airlines sound like the perfect plan to make me continue to drive or ride whenever possible. I wonder how long it will take for the other airlines to follow Spirit’s example.

Spirit Airlines New Fees


Fred Posner 2010-04-06 Reply

blogged: Yet Another Reason to Hate Airlines.

Scott Bruce 2010-04-06 Reply

I agree that this sucks but I think that this was inevitable once the airlines started charging for stowed luggage. The incentive system is so warped at this point that someone has to do something about carry-on baggage.

From the customer’s perspective: I don’t want to be charged for a stowed bag so I will try to carry everything I can on to the plane. The result is: 1. the plane looks like it is filled with refugees desperately clutching their last possessions in fear that someone will take their bags away from them and 2. there is simply not enough room on the plane for everyone’s bags. In every domestic flight I have been on since they started charging for stowed baggage if you are not in seating area one or two you can forget about having room to put your bag someplace.

I think charging for every bit of service is ridiculous. However, if the airlines had to charge for either carry-on or stowed baggage, I think there is a stronger incentive to charge for carry-ons so that they can keep the cabin clear.

That said, I will also go on the record as saying that very soon airline customer service staff and TSA officials will realize that there is a single common solution to their problems and start putting all customers into suspended animation or freezing them in Carbonite as soon as they enter the plane. No worries about terrorists, no need to listen to customers complain, no need to jockey for space. Airline staff will revive you if and when you arrive at your final destination.

Fred Posner 2010-04-06 Reply

I wonder what the rate would be if they switched it. Free checked, paid carry on. Which you clearly stated nicer than I did… but nonetheless.

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