A work-around for NWA’s fees

I can tell just by the sheer intelligence of the comments that are regularly posted on this site, that News Cut readers are smart — smart enough, I’m betting, to come up with a way around the fees that Northwest Airlines has decided to impose on the traveling public.

To recap, they are:

  • $15 for the first checked bag. I assume this is actually a $30 charge, since you pay the same thing coming back.
  • A $25 fee for frequent flier tickets ($50 across the Atlantic and $100 across the Pacific. If you’re wondering — and even if you’re not — it costs about $1,460 to fly round-trip to Tokyo)
  • The fee for changing your non-refundable ticket will go up to $150.

    Alright, let’s put our heads together here and figure out a work-around.

    Can we expect to see people trying to jam Titannic-sized trunks into the overhead compartments? How much can we squeeze into a backpack. Is there a market out there for disposable jeans and T-shirts that only last about a week and can be purchased at your destination, used, then tossed?


    • I’ve always been ticked at people who try to bring everything on the plane. I always check bags, I think it makes boarding go more smoothly. I can’t imagine that all these fees are a good idea. Departures are going to be late as everyone tries to jam their stuff in the bins. Just raise the prices, people. We get it. Fuel’s expensive. Stop trying to add all these fees!!!!!!!!!

    • Bob Collins

      But then they couldn’t advertise fares that are $150 less than they really are.

    • Alison

      Short route solution: Amtrak. It’s far more fuel efficient and far less polluting. Of course we need more destinations and more frequent trains to make it work.

    • minn whaler

      Wear 3 or 4 layers of clothes and skip luggage entirely. So it get’s a little warm…

      bring some instant ice packs in the pockets

      Getting through secutiry will no be even longer..

      and maybe they’ll start charging fees for that too

    • c


      that is a great idea!!!! undies, bathing suit, shorts and shirt, dress, ya got it! bulky but doable…..or if its more of a business trip go for the bendable polyester Hillary suit and just roll it up in your carry on.

      I think that this friend of mine that goes to Italy often skates by with just a carry on. t-shirt, shorts and pants he’s wearing.

    • I know people that use FedEx or UPS to send their luggage in advance if they’re staying for more than a few days. It always gets there (airlines can’t honestly say that – they can only truthfully say that it always gets somewhere) and they don’t have to lug it around. At $25 a bag, it might even be price competitive.

    • Trish

      I’ve been telling people for years…Pack Light! I take one carry on for two weeks in England and it works! Unless you’re going on safari where there are no stores, you can always purchase that toothpaste or whatever on your trip. It’s also a fun way to discover a new culture and learn a new language…how do you say “where is the deodorant?” in Hindustan!

    • Al

      My mother-in-law was part of a group who occasioanlly traveled overseas together. They would buy one large paperback novel that everyone wanted to read and tear it into chunks. The fastest reader would start and pass that chunk to the next fastest reader and start on the second chunk. The whole group only took one book along and passed around the pieces.

    • Al – My wife would die, she get mad if I bend the spine a little. Tear a book in chunks, ahhh.

    • Joel

      Travel light, whenever possible. Pack clothes that are wicking and lightweight. Wear pants that can be converted to shorts, and underwear, a shirt and socks that can be washed and dried overnight and ready to wear again the next day.

    • Alison

      Travel only to nudist resorts!

    • Amy

      Alison – I read recently that a European short-haul carrier is actually going to allow a nudist flight to a nudist camp … that should lighten the load tremendously. Not sure I’d want to be the next passenger on board, though.