Most people know that airlines make their real money in ancillary fees; those extra charges, like bag fees and seat selection charges that we all hate. In fact, a recent industry report suggests that North American carriers collected $17.2 billion in ancillary revenue last year. But is the revenue stream worth the stream of complaints and criticisms from customers? A survey from fly.com sheds some light on what fliers really hate being charged for, and for which services (including if they want to ship luggage) they would be willing to shell out more.
Fly.com questioned 613 U.S. travelers. 89% voiced the opinion that it is important airlines stop charging passengers for checked baggage. However, of the same travelers surveyed, 42% said they would pay extra for a reserved overhead storage bin on the plane. Reserved overhead storage was only one of a host of other services or upgrades travelers say they would be willing to pay more for, especially in lieu of baggage fees. It seems that in most cases, customers would pay an extra charge for services that improve the comfort and/or efficiency of travel. For instance:
45% would pay for extra leg room
36% would buy a security fast pass at the airport
34% would dish out to prevent the seat in front of them from reclining
26% would pay to have an empty middle seat next to them
Is it possible that charges for these kinds of services would make up for what would be lost if the airlines were to discontinue baggage fees? This may be an important consideration for airlines if they want to retain the business of the frugal traveler. Said best by Warren Chang, vice president and GM of Fly.com “While lucrative, it is important that airlines balance profit against the needs and interests of their passengers. Our latest survey reveals the type of ancillary opportunities that can bolster passenger satisfaction, while also delivering new revenue streams to the airline industry.”
The survey results also reported that 35% of people would pay to have their checked luggage come out first at baggage claim. Why not make it even easier? With Bags VIP luggage delivery, you can bypass baggage claim and begin making the most of your vacation or business trip right away, without the burden of luggage. Major airlines, cruise lines and world-famous resorts trust Bags to handle their customers’ luggage every day – more than 5 million bags each year! Now, you can Make Travel Easier and more enjoyable by having a Bags VIP agent retrieve your luggage from baggage claim when you arrive and deliver it to your hotel, home or office.