Thursday, November 03, 2011


Ever since the airlines started to charge for checked baggage, I have preached that they have it backwards - they should be charging for carry-on.  This would discourage the folks who believe that the carry-on rules apply to everyone but themselves [which unfortunately is most of the folks] and diminish the major cause of the great increase in the time that it takes to board a plane.  The New York Times recently had an article about this problem and noted that there are some mathematical solutions to optimize the boarding sequence.  Although it seems that everyone and their sibling now has "priority boarding status", it is clear that the carry-on barrage is the main contributor to the craziness.

Only one airline thus far has figured out that they should follow my recommendation.  Spirit Airlines now charges $20 - $40 per carry-on bag, which is more than they charge for checked baggage [which I still believe should be free.]  And as predicted, with less carry-on, the boarding times have dropped dramatically.


Jingles said...

Congratulations to Spirit. Chalk up the carry-on mess to the Satanic moon god, Allah. Because devout, Koran believing muslims believe it is their religious/political/socio/ticket-to-paradise duty to kill and terrorize Americans by bringing down airplanes with liquid explosives, the airlines drastically restricted liquids on carry-on luggage. This resulted in a massive increase in the number of bags checked rather than carried on.
The airlines were too understaffed to handle the drastic increase in the volume of checked baggage and passengers not having their baggage arrive when they did seemed to be the norm rather than the exception. To reduce the number of checked bags (and to turn a tidy profit), the airlines started charging checked bag fees, in conjunction with permitting liquids to be carried on if they were in a container three ounces or less and enclosed in a plastic bag.
However, even if checked bags were free once again, the frequent occurrence of your bags not arriving when you do is enough to deter many people from checking bags. Now the trek to the baggage claim area is always cause for anxiety. Will the bag be there or not this time? How many had to ask this question ten years ago?
Allah 1, American passengers 0.

hoosierdaddy said...

Jingles - agree in principle, but maybe not on some of the details. I remain unconvinced of the cost:benefit of the Patriot Act establishment of the TSA which is covered nicely here: I have lost some really nice pen knives, clippers and obvious threats like 4 oz of aftershave and toothpaste.

Jingles said...

You got off easy. The TSA thugs also randomly inspect checked baggage. A woman I know had an expensive camera stolen. Others have reported various and sundry valuable items "missing." Moral of the story is to keep valuable items with you or leave them at home.

Dr S said...

I too think that the TSA is a bureaucratic boondoggle. It would seem that a good metal detector and x-ray machine would suffice - along with a modicum of common sense.