Wednesday, December 7, 2016

News You Can't Use: US Airline to Charge Passengers Extra to use Overhead Lockers

It's time again for completely secular and unconnected to any traditions spend, gorge and travel season, and this, incredibly, means wasted money, gluttony and airplanes. Or so I'm told, anyway, I sure ain't moving away from my beepers and football box, that's for sure. For other individuals, or "losers" as I sometimes call them, getting on that flying tube is going to be even more unpleasant this year, something that, strictly speaking, shouldn't even be possible. Forget groping, radiation and being rejected for mile-up fornication, we've got a bigger problem. Overhead locker price gouging.

United Airlines, one of the world’s largest carriers, is facing fresh criticism over plans to charge passengers extra for the use of overhead lockers.

Aren't they out of business? No, you're thinking of one of a half-dozen other American tin-pushers that destroyed themselves in various fashions, like, hypothetically, going crazy with added charges.

The airline, which welcomed almost 139m passengers in 2015, will introduce a new “basic economy” fare in 2017. Those who opt for the cheapest ticket will be allowed to travel with a single small item of luggage, measuring no more than 9” x 10” x 17” (23cm x 25cm x 43cm), but they must place it under a seat and not in the overhead bins. 

The new "serf fare" includes luggage size restrictions, no lockers, and the "stews" are allowed to spit on you or trip you.

They will also be automatically allocated a seat on the day of departure, meaning passengers on the same ticket could be forced to sit apart.

On the other hand I saved four dollars, got a free radiation bath and TSA scumbags laughed at my small penis.

United claims the move, announced last month, does not amount to a new fee. Those who want to stow their hand luggage overhead can still do so if they choose the standard economy fare, it says.

Think of it as a new tax, because everyone loves those.

But those who choose the cheapest fare are unlikely to be making any savings. According to Reuters, basic economy fares “will be comparable to low fares it now charges for the economy cabin, but with more restrictions”.

I know, can you imagine?

Travellers reacted with anger over the decision, with some calling for a boycott of the airline, and now the outcry has reached US Congress.

Save us bloated, ineffectual and out-of-control big government!

There ought to be a law!

“It’s one of the most restrictive policies on airline passengers we have seen in a long time,” said Chuck Schumer, a New York Senator.

We'll legislate away capitalist practices we don't like, because that's our job.

“The overhead bin is one of the last sacred conveniences of air travel and the fact that United Airlines – and potentially others – plan to take that convenience away unless you pay up is really troubling."

Our inalienable right ordained by our Creator to stuff our junk into head-high bins. 

United is not the first airline to charge extra for carry-on luggage. Hungarian low-cost carrier Wizz, for example, permits passengers to carry a small item of luggage (25cm x 32cm x 42cm) for free, but charges for larger cabin bags (typically around £16 per flight). Those smaller bags can however, space permitting, be placed in overhead lockers.

Your best chance might be the old Magyar loophole, but read the fine print.

Aaron Zehner is the author of "The Foolchild Invention" available in paperback and e-book format. Read free excerpts here and here.  

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