WestJet and Air Canada announce fee increases for checked luggage

Two Air Canada jets taxi on the tarmac at the Halifax airport on Tuesday Sept. 20 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS  Andrew Vaughan

Two Air Canada jets taxi on the tarmac at the Halifax airport on Tuesday Sept. 20 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS Andrew Vaughan

Quickly on the heels of USA -airline Jet Blue Airways, Canada's two largest airlines are charging more - the first bag will increase by $5 and the second by nearly 70 per cent from $30 to $50.

The airline will now charge $30 for the first checked bag, the first of the major US airlines to charge customers that price, according to the company's website.

Arthur noted the increase is the first change since 2014 "and will help offset increasing costs and keep overall ticket prices competitive".

The cost of fueling a 737 jet is roughly $5,600 CAD more than it was a year ago. Those with bags over the limit (s) will be charged $150, a $50 increase from the previous fee.

JetBlue was a latecomer to checked bag fees, which became the norm in the airline industry in 2008.

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The moves were made swiftly after major USA airline JetBlue Airways Corp. hiked its fees for checked bags and to change a ticket.

"As other carriers have done, Air Canada has adjusted checked baggage fees in certain fare classes in select markets", Air Canada spokesperson Isabelle Arthur told Daily Hive.

It now costs more for passengers to check their bags for Air Canada and WestJet flights.

Approved carry-on bags and one personal item are still free.

WestJet's increases take effect October 1 for domestic flights booked as of last Friday, and as of Tuesday on global flights, including those to and from the U.S.

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