Paying a checked=This post languished as a short draft through the whole winter. Then I took a trip to Colorado about two weeks ago on Delta, brought my own ski equipment with and realized that if I hadn’t been able to pack lightly (3 day spring trip), that I would have had to check an additional bag, putting my checked bag fee up from a not so awful $50 to $120 extra (round-trip), almost as much as the Salt Lake City to Denver fare itself! I ski with an NTN telemark setup, which isn’t available for rent in many locations, so if I want to ski on gear I’m used to, I have to bring mine with. With that, here’s what I had written back in December:

There’s an interesting article regarding the airlines’ baggage fees and their effect on ski retailers in the Dec. 1, 2008 issue of Newsweek magazine. While it was neat to see my colleague quoted in the article (Krista), what really struck me about the article was the fact that it just concentrated on the bring the skis/rent the skis question and didn’t even touch on the fact that some people might decide to not even take a ski or snowboard trip this winter season.

Based upon early numbers from the 2009-2010 season, people took more ski vacations this year than last year. But, as airlines continue to add fees upon fees, will this become an obstacle to further increasing destination ski visitors in 2010-2011? I know I would think twice about booking a ski vacation on any airline except for Southwest thanks to their being the only airline to still include two checked bags in every fare!

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