Online Travel Agencies Work to Process New Airline Fees

As “a la carte” airline fees continue to rise, with extra charges such as bag fees multiplying, some travel industry planners want the industry to come up with standards that would let them more easily provide up-to-date information on a flight’s final cost, according to USA Today.

Fuel prices soared in 2008, and U.S. airlines began charging to check bags. Since then, charges for services that were once considered part of the airfare have multiplied. Jay Sorensen, president of IdeaWorks, an airline consulting firm, says that the fees are helping airlines but hurting travel agencies.

The explosion of fees presents additional challenges for people arranging business travel, says Kevin Mitchell of the Business Travel Coalition. Those challenges include difficulty determining on a card statement what the extra charges specifically paid for and how to efficiently get refunds when a trip is canceled.

Mitchell says his organization has joined with other groups and companies in the industry, and they plan to release recommendations this spring for how the travel sector can better navigate the new, fee-filled landscape.


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