Holiday Surcharges Are Back for Bags on Spirit, Frontier Airlines

Getting those bags home for the holidays just got a little more expensive.

ByABC News
November 4, 2015, 3:18 PM

— -- Flying home for the holidays may be a little more expensive this year, at least for bags.

Both Frontier and Spirit airlines will charge a little bit extra for bags to fly around Thanksgiving and Christmas. It's a move that Spirit made last year and will implement again this holiday season. This is the first year Frontier will have the surcharge.

Spirit will charge an extra $2 for the first checked bag from Dec. 16 to Jan. 4. Frontier's new "temporary price increases" are $5 to $10 from Nov. 19, 2015, through Jan. 5, 2016, Feb. 11, 2016, through April 4, 2016, and from June 9, 2016, through Aug. 16, 2016.

From the Frontier website: "Carry-on bag prices increase by $5 at booking and up to 24 hours before departure, $10 at Web Check-in, and $5 at the Airport kiosk or ticket counter; 1st Checked Bag increases by $5 at, at booking and up to 24 hours before departure and increases by $10 at call center, web check-in, and airport ticket counter or self-service kiosk. 2nd Checked Bag prices increase by $10."

During peak travel times -- like holidays and summer months -- the increased demand for checked bags results in added cost for handling those bags, Spirit told ABC News.

"It's important to note, that all airlines charge more for bags during peak periods, but many hide that added cost by including it in a higher ticket price," Spirit Airlines spokesman Paul Berry said via email. "This has two consequences for consumers: 1) All passengers on a flight pay the increased price, even if they don't check a bag. 2) The consumer has no idea what the extra high peak charge is.

At Spirit, we prefer to be transparent about our optional charges. That’s why we let everyone know what the charge is, and only those who check bags have to pay it."

Meanwhile, holiday fliers take note: This is the first holiday season JetBlue will be charging for the first checked bags. While the carrier has no additional charge for the holiday season, the bag fee, which went into effect this summer, is sure to take some infrequent travelers by surprise.