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Oct 01

News from the Industry: New Bag Fees, Progress on Integration, JetBlue Business Portal

Amtrak joins the bag fee game

“That’ll be $20 please. Oh, and a tip.”


Well, it was good while it lasted. As of today, the company is going to start charging excess baggage fees on passengers who bring on excess luggage, which is defined as more than two bags and two personal items. There will also be a weight limit of 50 pounds and 25 pounds, respectively. The fees will be $20 per bag, but Amtrak says not to expect baggage sizers just yet. They are simply enforcing the limits┬ábecause they are getting complaints about the number of bags people are bringing. Oddly, I believe them. Of course, they’re not averse to generating fee revenue, either.

American/US Airways Take Another Step Forward

Normally, I wouldn’t write about contract negotiations, but yesterday’s agreement between the CWA and customer service workers/gate agents is another step forward to bringing the airline under one entity. A small step, to be sure, but it is better than a failed negotiation. The final US Airways flight will be on October 16, 2015 and will be a red-eye from San Francisco to Philadelphia, landing on the morning of October 17. It will be flight #1939, which was the year that US Airways’ predecessor was founded.┬áThat’s the big change-over date for the reservation system and, if history is any guide, it will be best to get to the airport early for the first few days of the integration.

By the way, there are still seats available on that flight at $767 a pop, which would have been really cool if they were flying a 767. Alas, it’s an A321, but why sell tickets for $321 when you can get $767. Admit it, though: you want an air sickness bag from the flight as a souvenir.

Blue Inc.

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JetBlue recently launched Blue Inc, a business travel portal for small and medium-sized businesses. Not only will it help you arrange travel for your entire firm but they will also give you your business three points per dollar spent on employee travel booked through the portal. For all those about to become sole-proprietors, I don’t know if your business needs to have a minimum number of employees.

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