Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Next stop...charges for bathroom visits

Many of you have undoubtedly read about Ryanair's remarks about one day charging for bathroom visits, well it seems that North American carrier, Spirit, has added a charge before Ryanair. No...not to use the potty but for bringing your carry on luggage into the cabin. That's right...that backpack with a book, laptop, and wind breaker may end up costing you.

It appears that the carrier has drastically reduced some fares to a mere 1 cent (plus taxes, fees, etc.) and will charge for carry on (see here). This is not something that I have seen before, however with the stampede towards unbundling it surprises me it has not happened sooner.

Now, many readers may be in an uproar about such behavior by an airline, however as Kahn noted in the previous post, deregulation promotes such innovation. Spirit is free to attempt any revenue strategies it sees fit, and charging for carry on may be a wise move. It may drive more traffic into the cabin with the low fares, and people may simply pay extra for that carry on. Plus, in a wise move, you can pre-order the carry-on fee, which is cheaper compared to doing it at the gate. One experience an airline had with allowing passengers to pre-pay for luggage was that many pre-paid for the extra weight, but they never actually needed it.

From an operational perspective it may reduce overstuffed cabins and overhead bins and ease boarding. Imagine if the carrier can eek out 1 more hour of utilization. That would more than pay off for the revenue loss in the lowered ticket prices. However, I can't help but get pictures of sun-seeking passengers wearing a webbing vest or winter coat with all sorts of crap stuffed into the pockets. An iPad here, a sweater there, a toothbrush (no toothpaste though 'cause that's a liquid!), underwear and cell phone somewhere in there too!


viagra online said...

there are things you have to carry by hand and intended ahota charge for this! only that was missing!

Anonymous said...