Southwest Airlines planning new fees for next year

Posted: December 15, 2012

Southwest Airlines Co., which advertises that "bags fly free" and doesn't charge for the first two checked bags, said Friday that it will implement a flurry of new fees next year.

Southwest will charge a "no show" fee to passengers who fail to cancel a ticket before missing a flight.

The Dallas-based carrier aims to increase revenue by $1.1 billion in 2013.

Southwest fliers still won't be charged for the first two checked bags or for changing a reservation - both of which are standard fees on many U.S. airlines.

Sometime next year, customers who don't use a paid-for ticket on the cheapest "Wanna Get Away" fares will be assessed a "no-show" fee. The amount has not been decided and the process for assessing the fee was not announced.

Southwest chief commercial officer Bob Jordan said the no-show fee would give passengers an incentive to cancel a ticket before departure so that Southwest can resell those empty seats.

The cost of checking a third bag and overweight or oversize luggage will rise from $50 to $100. The fee for early check-in, allowing travelers to board early, will go from $10 to $12.50.

Checked bag fees on Southwest's subsidiary, AirTran Airways, will increase from $20 to $25 on the first bag and from $25 to $35 for a second bag.

"We didn't expect a lot of new information today at Southwest's analyst day, but we got some . . . driven by an apparently newfound appetite for fees," said analyst Hunter Keay, of Wolfe Trahan & Co. in a client note.


Contact staff writer Linda Loyd at 215-854-2831 or lloyd@phillynews.com.

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