Three quick tips to avoid airline baggage fees

Traveling is becoming more expensive every step of the way. Use these easy tips to find ways to keep your money in your pocket and away from the airlines looking to nickel and dime you every chance they get.
The part of the airport baggage claim area that is next to be upgraded in the airport's multi-year,
The part of the airport baggage claim area that is next to be upgraded in the airport's multi-year, / Scott Utterback/Courier Journal / USA

Flying is becoming more and more expensive. As airlines continue to chase the bottom line, extracting dollars from customers every bit of the way, customers must look for new ways to save money. Baggage fees are one of the biggest fees that can hit the hardest, but also one that can be avoided with proper planning. Take advantage of these tips to help keep costs low while traveling with the items that you need.

Weigh your bag at home

This is an easy tip that many individuals don’t practice, but one that could help save them money. Invest in a scale for your home that can also be used to weigh your bag before traveling. Most airlines stick to tight restrictions that bags must weigh 50 pounds or less. Take a moment to sit your packed bag on the scale to ensure that it falls within that range. This will give you the opportunity to remove and repack items, without the pressure of a crowd or looming departure time hanging over your head at the check-in desk.

Take advantage of travel points or airline credit cards

Credit cards may not be a feasible option for everyone looking to save money, but they can help with the goal of avoiding airline fees. Get either a credit card specific to a travel line, or a card that offers bonus points programs. Yes, these cards come with annual fees which will make them difficult to manage for some, but they are still a tool that can be used to help avoid these costly fees when attempting to travel.

Check your bag at the gate

This tip can be a gamble but can also be a surefire option when you are traveling. Often, cabin space will become full on flights, forcing airlines to request the remaining travelers to check their bags. If you’re able to get your bag through the initial check-in and want to check it on the way to your last stop, this is a way to do so without having to pay. It’s a good tactic for those that are heading to their destination but is riskier for those that must transfer to another flight.

Flying is an important part of the travel experience, and it is becoming more costly to do so. It is up to the travelers to find new ways to save money, and that includes taking all the steps needed to avoid baggage fees.

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