Baggage fees are confusing and here to stay, study finds

February 12, 2013, 10:24 pm EDT

Airlines worldwide claimed $36.1 billion in revenue in 2012 from various fees, a roughly 11 percent increase from 2011. But, the fees airlines charge are becoming more complex and less transparent, potentially confusing travelers, a new study suggests.

A study from TravelNerd found that airlines made a total of 52 changes to their fees during the past year. Of those changes, 36 were because of a fee increase while the remaining 16 changes came about because of bundling (or unbundling) fees or redefining fee policies, TravelNerd found.

Airlines are charging more types of fees today than in years past, Alicia Jao, vice president for travel media at, said in an interview. At the same time, fee changes “are clearly becoming more complex.”

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Todd DeFeo loves to travel anywhere, anytime, taking pictures and notes. An award-winning reporter, Todd revels in the experience and the fact that every place has a story to tell. He is also editor of

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