Slow hand clap to Ryanair for leading the way on fee increases, and a shake of the head to the travelers who have made a decision to fly with them and then complain about the consequences.
An annual study by TravelSupermarket, the price comparison website, revealed those carriers whose fees for “optional” services, including checked luggage and allocated seating, have risen most sharply.
The largest increase in baggage fees was by Thomson. The airline’s charge has gone up by 47 per cent since 2012, from £15 per person per flight to £22. EasyJet’s equivalent fee has increased by a quarter, from £14.50 to £18, since March 2012, while Ryanair, Flybe and Jet2 have all raised their baggage fees by at least 10 per cent.
The cost to check in an overweight item of hand luggage has also increased on several airlines – from £30 to £50 with Monarch (+67 per cent), from £30 to £40 with Flybe (+33 per cent), from £35 to £40 with British Airways (+14 per cent), and from £130 to £140 with Ryanair (+8 per cent).
Pressure from the Office of Fair Trading over debit and credit card fees meant that most airlines actually cut their charges since last year. Jet2’s dropped from 3.6 per cent to 2.5 per cent, for example, and Monarch’s from four per cent to 2.5. But some airlines have instead increased their “booking fee”, including Ryanair (£6 to £7), Aer Lingus (£6 to £7) and easyJet (£9 to £10).
Meanwhile admin charges have also gone up. Thomas Cook’s fee for a name change on a flight ticket rose, from £20 to £30, as did Monarch’s, from £27.50 to £35.
Ryanair also increased the fee for travelling with an infant, from £20 to £30, as did Monarch, from £15 to £20.
|Ryanair (selected routes)||£30||£35||+16.67%|
Overweight hand luggage
|Ryanair (selected routes)||£130||£140||+7.7%|
|Re-issue of boarding pass||£60||£70||+16.67%|
Photo credit: Passengers board a Ryanair plane parked at Girona airport. Albert Gea / Reuters