The practice of airlines charging additional fees – such as those for checked luggage, in-flight meals/drinks and seat upgrades – is on the rise among European airlines.
The additional fees phenomenon surged in the US following the steep oil-price jump in 2008. European airlines are now also embracing the policy, partly due to the ongoing European economic troubles, according to the Los Angeles Times.
In January, Lufthansa spun-off a number of its short-haul European routes to a new low-cost subsidiary, Germanwings, that charges for checked bags, in-flight meals and seat assignment.
In March, British Airways launched options for separate “hand baggage only” fares on some short-haul European flights.
In April, KLM became the first European full-service airline to introduce a checked bag fee on flights within Europe.
The trend is expected to continue as full-service carriers face increasing competition from low-cost carriers, specially on short-haul routes.