Delta breaks ground with international checked baggage fee

Delta Air Lines is planning to charge for checked bags on international flights. As with the domestic bag policies, Delta is starting out by attaching a fee only to the second piece of checked luggage; the new $50 charge will take effect July 1. Elite-level members of the Delta/Northwest frequent flyer programs do not have to pay the fee, and the first checked bag is still free for all passengers. Delta said it expects the international bag fee to bring in $100 million annually. However, since Delta is the first major U.S. carrier to impose a checked bag fee on international flights, it remains to be seen if that fee will “stick” – that is, Delta could change its mind if no other airlines match. On the domestic side, however, it didn’t take long for all the legacy carriers to get on board with fees for both the first and second checked bags once American Airlines crossed that barrier.

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