Category Archives: Media

Will You Be Charged Fees for Carry-On Baggage By the Transportation Security Administration?

Seth Miller, author of The Wandering Aramean weblog, reports that the Transportation Security Administration, or TSA, might be considering charging passengers fees for transporting carry-on baggage through airport security checkpoints in the future because the costs to screen carry-on bags is increasing, possibly in response to passengers avoiding checking their baggage to avoid checked baggage fees.

There is only one problem with this: passengers are already charged fees for using airport security checkpoints in the United States. Simply look at the taxes and fees section of the airfare for which you paid.

If this idea is actually implemented, could this be a form of double taxation? Does the Transportation Security Administration need additional funds to stay in operation? Is this possible proposal a good idea?


Fee Court: The Latest Advertising Campaign from Southwest Airlines

The following commercials regarding “fee-court matter” by Southwest Airlines are entertaining as they imply how airlines charging their passengers ancillary fees can be downright — well — criminal:

Airline Fees Can Cost More Than Double the Actual Airfare Itself

If you do not believe us, just watch the following video of ABC News reporter Ryan Owens as he set out on a two-day, almost 6,000-mile journey:

TruPrice Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer Appears on CNN Money

Starting at 0:47 in this video clip from CNN Money, TruPri¢e co-founder, chief marketing officer and frequent flier Brian Cohen reveals one of his many wacky airline itineraries in an impromptu video interview recorded by none other than veteran frequent flier Randy Petersen, founder of FlyerTalk, in the lobby of the Westin hotel in Seattle earlier this month.

TruPrice Recommended at American Express OPEN Forum

We truly appreciate having TruPri¢e mentioned by author and personal finance expert Jean Chatzky here in the Top 10 List: Airline Fees – And How to Avoid Them, as quoted below from the American Express OPEN forum:

“Finally, a bit of advice: is a pretty handy new site that helps you calculate how much your trip will end up costing, including fees for checked bags and any extra services you select. That way, you can set an accurate budget for your trip. As a small business owner myself, I know how important that is.”

However, we like to be as fair as possible and must correct Ms. Chatzky on one item in her article. She mentions the following about the carry-on baggage fee imposed by Spirit Airlines this past summer:

“Carry on bag.  You read that correctly – you just can’t win if you’re flying Spirit Airlines. They began charging $30 for a carry on bag on August 1, and that’s if you let them know in advance.  A last minute addition paid for at the gate will cost you $45.  In this case, you can actually save $5 by checking your bag.”

Passengers of Spirit Airlines with carry-on baggage can save money on the fee altogether — that is, carry on their bags for free without paying the carry-on baggage fee — if the bag fits under the seat in front of the passenger, as clearly defined by Spirit Airlines.

Finally, another way to avoid paying some of the fees on her list altogether is to achieve elite status in a frequent flier loyalty program on at least one airline. While this certainly can be easy to do if flying frequently enough, there are ways to achieve frequent flier elite status with little flying, or even with no flying whatsoever. FlyerTalk is a great Internet web site filled with tips and advice on how to qualify for frequent flier elite status with minimal effort, depending on the airline.

National Opt-Out Day: November 24, 2010

For those of you who loathe at the thought of going through a Advanced Imaging Technology, or AIT, full-body scanner machine at an airport security checkpoint, you can choose to participate in National Opt-Out Day: November 24, 2010, aimed at effectively calling negative attention to the use of these machines in the hopes of eventually lessening or eliminating their use altogether because of privacy and health concerns.

However, some argue that National Opt-Out Day will be ineffective, as it calls for travelers to “opt-out” of being scanned by a full-body imaging machine and instead undergo the alternative of an enhanced — and some say invasive — pat-down of your entire body which includes the touching of your private areas by Transportation Security Administration — or TSA — personnel. There are those who argue that the alternative is worse than the machines targeted by this protest.

Another argument against this movement is that it will allegedly inhibit travel by unnecessarily increasing lines and wait times at airport security checkpoints.

The most incredible part of all of this is that these invasive airport security procedures are allegedly financed by you through fees that are a part of the airfare that you paid.

BC Living Lists TruPrice as One of Ten Recommended Travel Deal Internet Web Sites

Here is a quote directly from BC Travel magazine in British Columbia, Canada regarding TruPri¢e as a “tool that make booking travel, or just travelling in general, an altogether better and more efficient experience”:

“This search engine computes airline fee information for you, eliminating unexpected surprises. It saves you from getting to the end of your booking and being hit with a host of extra fees. You won’t necessarily save on those fees here, but TruPrice allows you to quickly and easily find the total cost of a fare without going through the entire booking process. The site is quite new and only works for about 14 airlines, all U.S.-based, but it will definitely be useful when you’re booking that next trip into the United States.”