Virgin Blue introduces luggage fees but Qantas won’t follow suit

Virgin Blue will slug customers travelling on discount fares up to $20 to check in luggage as the airline struggles to combat rising fuel costs and falling consumer spending.

Virgin Blue will slug customers travelling on discount fares up to $20 to check in luggage as the airline struggles to combat rising fuel costs and falling consumer spending.

Under the new luggage regime, travellers flying on Virgin’s “Go Fare” and “Blue Saver” fares will have to pay $8 if they pay online for up to 23 kilograms of check-in baggage. Those who do not pre-pay will have to cough up $20 when they check their baggage in at the airport.

Baggage over the 23 kilogram allowance will attract an additional charge of $8 for every kilogram in excess of the allowance.

Hand luggage up to 10 kilograms will still not attract charges.

But Qantas has ruled out following Virgin’s luggage charge lead. When asked if Qantas had plans to introduce luggage fees, the Qantas answer was definitive: “No.”

Virgin’s new charges, which come into effect today, are part of a raft of measures designed to insulate the company’s profitability from rising fuel prices. The company has also retired old aircraft and jacked up the prices of some business class fares.

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