Delta Increases Baggage Fees by as Much as $300

Delta announced Tuesday afternoon that it will raise its checked baggage and overweight baggage fees on both domestic and international flights. Increases apply to travelers who book after July 30 and travel after August 4. As expected, Delta said the new charges were necessary to offset fuel prices.

On domestic flights, fees will increase to $50 (up from $25) for second checked bags, $125 (up from $80) for third checked bags, and $200 each (up from $80 to $180) for the fourth through 10th bags. On international routes, you'll soon have to pay $200 (up from $150) for the third checked bag, $350 each (up from $150) for the fourth and fifth bags, and $600 each (up from $300 to $600 each) for the sixth through 10th bags. In addition to these increases, fees for overweight bags will also rise for bags weighing 51 to 70 pounds from $80 to $90 on domestic flights and from $80 to $150 on international flights. Bags weighing 71 to 100 pounds will go up from $150 to $175 on domestic flights and from $150 to $300 on international flights.

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The good news: First checked bags remain free on domestic and international flights, as do second checked bags on international flights, so the lighter packers among us will still be able to sneak by without paying extra. Given travelers' strong aversion to first-checked-bag fees, Delta's current baggage policy may help it gain or retain customers who've sworn off flying other airlines that charge this fee. We'll follow the situation and see if Delta is still able to avoid this dreaded charge, and, if it does, if other airlines will seek to emulate its model.

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