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airport baggage claimBy next year, there may only be one airline in the U.S. that lets fliers check a bag for free.

While both JetBlue and Southwest currently allow travelers to bring aboard a complimentary checked bag (Southwest even lets you have two!), Bloomberg reports that JetBlue is looking into overhauling its ticket pricing structure, which will likely lead to a few extra fees for those who pay the cheapest possible fare.

According to Bloomberg, the airline plans to create multiple fare classes, some of which would include a free bag and/or other services. Fliers could pay a higher rate for a more inclusive fare, or pony up for their checked bag if they elect the cheapest available fare. The changes are expected to take effect within the first six months of 2015.

This sort of bundling isn’t new. Frontier Airlines and Air Canada are among the carriers that currently offer multiple fare options when booking. Frontier’s Classic Plus fares are fully refundable and include a free checked bag, extra legroom and a beverage, while its bare-bones Economy fares are cheaper and include none of the above. Air Canada offers Tango, Flex and Latitude fares, each of which comes with different benefits (or lack thereof) such as waived change fees, priority check-in and standby privileges. (Worth noting: In all three of Air Canada’s fare classes you’ll have to pay for checked bags.)

How to Hack Your Way to a Cheaper Airfare

Naturally, JetBlue’s proposed changes are all about money; Bloomberg reports that the airline’s profits trail those of its competitors. I know airlines aren’t charities and they need to make a buck, but it’s still a bummer for those of us who appreciate companies that don’t try to nickel and dime us.

Will you still fly JetBlue if these changes go into effect?

– written by Sarah Schlichter

2 Responses to “JetBlue May Begin Charging for First Checked Bag”

  1. John H says:

    JetBlue is definitely one of my fave airlines especially with the direct flight from Austin to Boston. But with a checked bag fee, I might think twice. Only exception would be if you have the JetBlue AMEX card and I would get a free checked bag for multiple people.

  2. doreen smethurst says:

    I would think twice about sung Jet Blue if they charge for a bag. Next they will not give you a cookie either. This nickel and dime approach by US airlines is half hour flight – in stark contrast to say Lufthansa just to mention one. I flew from Frankfurt to Madrid – a 2 and at the most half hour flight. Hot towels were handed out before a delicious lunch was served – free wine, drinks, champagne even.
    Returning on United airlines from Spain no hot towels, awful food, charge of $7.99 for a glass of wine – never go international on any US airline ever again. Night and day difference.
    I fly regularly to California from Rochester NY and get nothing except coffee or a soft drink – starting my day at 6.15a.m. and arriving in San Francisco at noon = 3 hour time difference. Nothing at all.
    Overhead bins are always full and this delays take off and when we land it is madness.

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