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US House Bill Threatens to Slash Airline Bag Fees to $4.50

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Rep. John Mica wants to go down in history as the airline bag fee slasher. ( المزيد...

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Loral Thomas 4
Sneaky John is at it again. I use to live in his district. Guess he figures he can win over the passenger while privatizing ATC. Headline sounds good but . . . .
Timothy McDonnell 4
which of course would jump ticket prices to compensate there by doing nothing.
Jonathan Alexander 4
How short sighed many of you are and how quickly you forget. You fail to know your social political history. It's only been 9 years that airline bag fees have been the norm. Before then the fees were charged primarily for bags over 50 pounds. Airlines began charging fees as the standard to counter the impact of the 2008 recession and to help offset the increase in fuel prices. The fee was only supposed to be temporary. The fuel prices stabilized and even came down and the recession ended, but the airlines oddly forgot to end the baggage fees. Maybe it was because they realized they were making millions more because of the no longer necessary fees.

The airline industry while private has always been heavily regulated. The idea of planes falling out of the sky, midair and other collisions, and other safety related incidents including the great possibility of hijackings and terrorism require that the industry be highly regulated to ensure the safety of the flying and non-flying public. In addition, regulations ensure consistent, adequate, proficient training, skills, procedures and policies not just locally, but worldwide. The fees sting because the airlines lied to the flying public. And now a few companies have taken the charging of fees to a level of ridiculousness. And that is why congress is now considering increasing regulations. When the cats away the mice will play. If the airlines insist on being irresponsible and greedy then they only have themselves to blame for increased government intervention.
Josh Schwartz 0
Nobody here thinks regulation for airlines isn't important. We all believe that you need regulation in order to ensure safe skies. I take issue to the government telling an industry how to run itself. The government has never told any other industry what they can charge and how they can operate. Its like telling baseball stadiums how much they can charge for beer. Thats astronomically high, but people still pay it and it would be totally inappropriate for the government to step in and regulate it. I hate checked bag fees too, they really do suck. But regulation like this is totally wrong.

I also think you may be somewhat shortsighted as well. For one thing, the airline fees normally feed directly into airport operations, renovations and investments. Airline investments have been at an all time high, coincidently when profits are high as well. It is fairly safe to say that in the current political climate, this new bill would never pass, and Representative Mica is up for re-election soon. Wouldn't it be great for him to campaign on introducing a bill that would lower airline fees? What voter wouldn't love that. Even if it is totally unrealistic, it is merely a campaign tactic. Tons of politicians do this.
Ric Wernicke 3
$4.50 to turn them in. $45.50 when you want them back.
Josh Schwartz 3
As much as I hate checked bag fees, regulating an industry in this way is counterproductive and un-American. I can't think of another industry that is told what to charge and how to charge it in the way Representative Mica is proposing. Airlines use any profit they make in investing in newer fleets, supporting American jobs and investing in airports. Their economic success is crucial to the global tourism business, and hindering their profits will have widespread effects around the world. This is a great campaign tool, one that will get a lot of support from many Americans, but once they think of the ripple effects something like this has I'm sure people will rather have a system much like the one we have today.
btweston 2
Those filthy, freedom hating, liberal socialist Democrats...

Oh, wait...
Brian Bishop 2
Why is it any of the government's DANG business what a private business charges its customers for the services it provides? Geeez people.
LGM118 1
John Mica is the worst. I used to work at a pro-passenger rail advocacy group and I remember how, in the space of basically a year he went from being a reasonable advocate for a balanced transportation system to basically a pro-highway, anti-everything else nut in the space of under a year. This all happened pretty much right after he took over chairmanship of the committee from Jim Oberstar.

When Bill Shuster took over the chairman spot for the house transportation committee back in 2013, he spent several months basically having to tell Mica to shut up so that the Committee could actually get things done instead of spending (almost literally) all of its time on Amtrak-bashing, in between his nearly incessant demands for a whole mess of federal funding for SunRail (which runs through his district), so basically he ended up getting called out over and over again for cynically using Amtrak as a whipping boy to show off his conservative credentials despite actually wanting rail transit (provided it's in his district and no one else's)

The upside is that Mica has made himself more or less politically irrelevant and essentially he's an annoying ex-committee chair backbencher. The downside is that he actually really ended up dragging the whole committee down with him because they weren't actually doing anything on general transportation issues and instead wasting their time on hearings about why Amtrak loses money on food service (I think there were something like eight different hearings on that one topic - it became a running joke that the biggest single issue in American transportation policy was why Amtrak can't make money selling a hamburger).
Kent Thompson 1
John must not have any thing constructive to do if he's spending his time thinking up stupid crap like this bill.
Jamie Bikales 1
This would hugely benefit Southwest
JIm` C 1
What business is it of the govmt what an airline charges for its services? I don't like bag fees so I simply vote with my credit card by using Southwest or Jet Blue. If I have to fly on an airline charges bag fees I carry on. If an airline charges for carry on, I don;t fly them. Pretty simple.
Ken McIntyre 1
Much as I hate baggage fees, the FEDs should leave this alone. Last time I checked, airlines were privately owned. Oh wait, election year is coming up.
preacher1 5
Depending on what chart you use, we have a 16 to 20 trillion dollar national debt and we are worried about baggage fees on a private company.
Matt Lacey 1
$97T is the number according GAAP. Bottom center of the page below.
linbb 1
Seems they want there stamp on things that do not even concern them. Much like the mess with the supposed airline ticket price fixing. And to btweton, leave the political party out of the discussion as the problem is with the person not the party here.

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