So American Airlines next month is going to start charging $15 to check your bag! Other airlines are considering it. See Checked Bag Fees: Money for Nothing.
Have the airlines considered the unintended consequences? Customers who will now choose airlines that provide normal reasonable service? More unchecked luggage clogging up the security lines, crammed into scarce cabin space, and slowing down boarding? Even more rage at LOST luggage?
I understand that fuel prices and cutthroat competition are squeezing airlines, so that the only way they can make ends meet is by cutting out the free peanuts and the like. But airlines have always had trouble making a profit. Isn’t there a business model that would allow airlines to stay in business while providing good service?
Higher prices would surely be a part of that, but the pricing system seems out of joint also, with some passengers paying many times what others pay for the same flight. Is there a solution to this?