5 ways to save on airline tickets
If you'll need to check one bag (or more) on the flight, find out how much you'll be charged before purchasing the fare. Most airlines and travel sites offer this information online. To compare rates side by side, visit Airfarewatchdog.com's baggage chart, which lists baggage rates for different U.S. airlines, including fees for overweight and oversize bags.
Airline policies for checked baggage vary greatly, depending on the flight route and status, Chang says. For domestic flights, average airline fees range between $15 and $50 per checked bag; rates for international flights fluctuate more, depending on the airline and destination. To avoid reading through the fine print, Fly.com offers a baggage icon. When searching a flight, click on the baggage icon to check luggage fees before booking a ticket. The information displayed is relevant to the airline and the flight you're taking, Chang says. For example, if you search for a fare from New York to India you'll see fees related to that specific flight.
Plan to bring a pet, ask for extra legroom or eat a meal on the flight? Check out FareCompare.com's domestic airline fee chart, which lists these fees and others charged by U.S. airlines. However, it's a good idea to double-check fees on the official airline website as well, in case policies have recently changed.