Airlines Banking on Fees

By Omar Villafranca
|  Tuesday, May 4, 2010  |  Updated 6:23 AM CDT
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Nickel-and-Diming? $8 Billion in Fees for Airlines

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While many may think charges for checked bags make up the bulk of the fees, American said fliers spend almost as much to change ticket reservations.

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Nickel-and-Diming? $8 Billion in Fees for Airlines

Travel with your pet? Want to change your flight reservation to a later time? There's a fee for that.
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Travel with your pet? Want to change your flight reservation to a later time? There's a fee for that.

In 2009, the airline industry raked $7.8 billion in ancillary fees from checked bags to traveling with a pet. The amount is a 40 percent increase from the previous year.

Delta Airlines was made the most money, charging passengers roughly $1.6 billion. American Airlines was second, with just more than $1 billion.

Southwest Airlines, with their "Bags Fly Free" motto, was fourth on the list with more than $600 million in extra fees.

The totals do not include ticket prices. But while many may think charges for checked bags make up the bulk of the fees, American said fliers spend almost as much to change ticket reservations.

The totals were released this week by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

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