The Ultimate Guide to Airline Fees: Bad News, Easily Referenced

Posted June 26, 2008 by Nicki Krawczyk

Happylaptopkid Grrr.
The sound of teeth gnashing.
The sound of wallets exploding.

That’s right kids, it’s everybody’s favorite love-to-hate-it topic: airline fees! I know, I know, this is well-covered territory. Air travelers across the country are up in arms about the extra charges. Checked-bag fees! Seat-choice fees! Snack fees! Why, it’s tantamount to ordering a pizza and having them charge you for each individual topping!


I’ll let you mull that over. Meanwhile, let’s move on to the good news. Thanks to a combination of editorial forces not unlike the Justice League, the good people over at our sister sites—,, and — have joined forces (and information) to bring a boon to the masses: The Ultimate Guide to Airline Fees.

Dark clouds are clearing …

This regularly updated Compendium of Extra Expense promises to put an end to that unpleasant sensation of Fee Ambush. No more “How much to keep Fluffy out of the hold?” or “Is it cheaper to check Junior as baggage?” or “If I forget my wallet, do I have to lap water from the lavatory faucet?” Indeed, find answers to all of this and more in a convenient chart format. Who knows where the fine print is that matches that tiny asterisk? The Ultimate Guide to Airline Fees knows. Oh, it knows.

Never one to shirk my fair share of the burden, of course, I’m willing to pitch in and offer a little added-value advice on how best to reference this chart and retain the information. First, of course, I recommend bookmarking this page so you can get to the link and print out the PDF anytime you need it (Suggested Bookmark Title: Another Resplendent Piece of Writing! And fee chart.) Good plan. Of course you could just bookmark the SmarterTravel blog page directly. Bear in mind that you miss out on this blog if you go straight to that one. I’m just saying.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are a couple of easy-reference methods that I’m not going to recommend. Tattooing, for example. Painful. Time-consuming. Hard to update. Skip it. Also, don’t bother with mnemonic devices. Unless you’re willing to put this chart to song in, say, the 17 minutes of In A Gadda Da Vita, I wouldn’t bother. I include these merely as suggestions, of course, you’re free to do as you wish. (In fact, I’d like to sponsor a contest. The best YouTubed rendition, as judged by the BookingBuddy team, of the Ultimate Guide to Airline Fees set and sung to In A Gadda Da Vita wins special mention on the blog. Tell your friends.)

So there you have it. One chart and four pieces of relevant advice. Plus one opportunity for international stardom. Don’t you kind of feel lighter? Like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders? I’m guessing those fees don’t feel so bad anymore. Or at least you haven’t really thought about them since I got Iron Butterfly stuck in your head. See? We’re all about the helpfulness.


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Reader Comments

Great information! is a great site to compare 25 different extra airline fees and flight prices from top sites at the same time.

Posted on August 19, 2008 at 05:09 PM by Charles Goodwin

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