The Days of Hidden Fees to End for Airline Passengers

Posted by Rachel Klein on January 11, 2012 at 1:52:49 PM EST | Post a Comment

New-Airline-Rules.jpg

The last of bait-and-switch airfare pricing may finally be upon us. At least, that's what several new regulations going into effect by the end of January suggest. The biggest news is that all those hidden taxes and fees that increase an advertised $59 one-way fare to Florida up to $112—or $224 round-trip after all is said and done—will now need to be shown upfront, rather than at the end of the booking process. Equally appealing, passengers will also be allowed to change their reservations for free within 24 hours of booking, ending the scourge of rebooking fees.

But a handful of airlines—specifically discount carriers—think that the rule will mean losing customers and revenue. Spirit Airlines and Southwest Airlines have filed for a court appeal, although it's unlikely this will cause a delay in the new mandates taking effect.

In addition, travelers will see additional charges for baggage up front when booking online, and can pay in advance of arriving at the airport.

The U.S. Department of Transportation is putting the reservations and baggage rules into effect on January 24, 2012, and is telling airlines that they must disclose taxes on fares beginning on January 26, 2012.

For travelers, it's clearly a big win, as few things are more frustrating when planning a trip than airline ticket sticker shock.

What do you think about the new rules? We'd love to know! Share your comments below.

Photo credit: GA161076 / iStockphoto

Member Comments (0)

Sign in to leave a comment
Browse More Topics
Top News

No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE email communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.