Airlines Promise a Return to Civility, for a Fee

Posted at: 09/30/2013 11:54 AM

NEW YORK (AP) - Would you pay more for a plane ticket if you could have an empty seat next to you?

It's among the new options being offered by airlines for additional fees. Airlines are also renting iPads that are pre-loaded with movies, and they're selling hot first-class meals in coach. And once passengers are on the ground, they can skip baggage claim and have their luggage delivered directly to their home or office.

It's a change from the first generation of new charges, which dinged fliers for services that were once free, like checking a bag.

In the near future, airlines plan to go one step further -- using massive amounts of personal data to customize new offers for each flier.

Some travelers see the value in the new enhancements. Nadine Angress of Massachusetts was on a recent USAirways flight home that would get her home past the bedtime of her six-year-old son. And she had to be at work early the next morning. So, for $30, she skipped the baggage carousel and had the suitcase delivered to her home.

Without the additional fees that airlines charge, experts say fares would be 15 percent higher.

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