From the Dec. 19, 2010, Chicago Tribune "Chief gripe: Charging for checked bags" by Christopher Elliott.
This is going to hit me as I prepare to fly down to Fort Myers, Florida, in February for several days with a group of buddies. I used to fly everywhere all the time, but very rarely any more and this is one of the main things I am mad about. I WANT my "Free" baggage. Although I doubt it was ever free, just included in the price.
These new charges are a big reason airlines are returning to profitability. In 2008, passengers paid an extra $1.1 billion and in 2009 $2.7 billion.
A survey taken by the Consumer Travel Alliance showed that 56& of respondents said they were mad about not being able to check their first bag in at no charge. About 20% miss the "free" meals and 19% missed being able to make confirmed-seat-reservation.
And I "Ain't" Finished Yet. --RoadDog