I recently flew Spirit and avoided most of the fees–I printed my boarding pass before getting to the airport, packed only a backpack that could fit under the seat in front of me, didn’t get an assigned seat until check in–but I didn’t avoid the online ticketing fee (aka “passenger usage fee) of about $17. If Spirit can charge $17 to book a ticket online (with the alternative being going to the airport to get a ticket booked in person), here are 5 other fees I think Spirit could get away with.
1. Air circulation fee. Feeling hot on the plane and want some air? Pay up to open up the air vent above your seat. Spirit could increase air vent usage by removing window shades from their planes so the planes get extra hot and toasty in the sun.
2. Passenger appearance fee. This could take the form of you paying more to be seated next to an attractive passenger, or ugly people could just have to pay more at check in. Beautiful people are just more pleasant to look at, after all.
3. Smooth flight fee. Don’t want to get jerked around on touch down? Hate turbulence? Better hope that enough passengers paid the smooth flight fee so that the pilot doesn’t intentionally fly into storms or come down a little too hard.
4. Paper utilization fee. Passengers might revolt if they were charged to go to the bathroom (although Ryanair has talked about instituting such a fee in the past), but why not charge people for toilet paper and paper towels once they’re in the bathroom? Don’t want to pay and need to go #2? Better hope that you brought your own toilet paper on board.
5. Cabin pressurization fee. It ain’t easy to keep a plane pressurized so you can keep breathing, so why shouldn’t Spirit charge for this? You can avoid paying this fee by providing your own oxygen tank and mask.