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Baggage Fees Are Costing Taxpayers $260 Million

Luggage coming off a plane
Lester Lefkowitz Getty Images

It’s kind of amazing that an industry as important as the airlines manages to be such a complete and utter disaster.

Ever since the airlines realized they could get away with charging baggage fees, customers responded by checking far fewer bags and jamming stuff into their carry-ons to save money.

Or at least we thought it would save money.  While it saves you $50 or so in the short term . . . it turns out it’s costing all of us more in the long term.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the increase in carry-ons is costing the taxpayers an extra $260 MILLION a year.

That’s because it’s more labor intensive for the TSA to check your carry-on than it is for them to check your checked luggage.  So with more carry-ons, more TSA employees are required to meet all the demand at the security checkpoint.

Homeland Security has two ideas about how to deal with it:  One, the airlines could give them a piece of the baggage check fees to cover the costs.

Of course, as soon as you take that money away from the airlines, they’ll instantly have a new way to take more money from you to cover the difference.

The other plan would be to add YET ANOTHER FEE to all plane tickets that would go toward covering the costs. 

Via (Time)

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