Airline Fees Are Racking Up, and Your Cargo Could Still be in Danger

Airfare costs always seem to be increasing, but the rising prices are not just ticket prices. Airports are raking in money hand over fist in ancillary fees charged to passengers for a variety of reasons.According to a survey conducted by CarTrawler and IdeaWorksCompany, airlines took in $31.5 billion last year from extra fees, up nearly 1200 percent since 2007. These fees are growing even faster than ticket prices, allowing airlines to keep profits up in otherwise economically-challenging times.

So where is this $31.5 billion coming from? The majority of this revenue, about $18.6 billion, comes from the sale of frequent flier miles. Baggage fees account for 25%, while the remainder of these fees come from travel retail (hotel, car, trip insurance), onboard retail (food, duty-free purchases), and other a la carte services.Though they only account for 25 percent of the $31.5 billion total, baggage fees are the most well-known and most maligned of airline fees. There are fees for each checked bag, and sometimes even carry-on bags can be checked at the pilot’s request, leading to additional costs for you. Then there are those overweight baggage fees, which are often impossible to avoid, particularly after a long trip, and are very quick to add up.

But paying these fees in no way ensures that your baggage is going to be safely handled. Baggage handlers handle thousands of containers a day, and accidents do happen. Every year, roughly 2 million pieces of luggage disappear, arrive late, become damaged, or experience theft. Personal baggage, like that kept in a suitcase, is one matter, but many people also must travel with important business materials, such as computer or media equipment, and these can be incredibly difficult, incredibly expensive, sometimes even impossible to replace.

For more valuable and irreplaceable cargo, there are more secure options available. Aluminum cases will safely and easily protect any product as it travels to its destination. They typically have cushioning and padding for the products held inside, and a rugged construction on the outside that protects from weather conditions, heat, and moisture damage.

Custom cases are an even better option, as they can be designed exactly to your cargo’s needs and specifications. If your cargo is susceptible to damage from temperature change or shock, the right case can be designed with those factors in mind, to keep it safe in transit.

You may not have any control over the way your cargo is handled, regardless of how much the airline is charging you to handle it, but you can do your best on your end to make sure that your items are safely and securely protected from any accidents or mistreatment.


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