Delta Air Lines will charge customers $15 to check one piece of luggage on flights starting next month. But the second-largest carrier at Tampa International Airport also will reduce or eliminate other fees to make them consistent with those of merger partner Northwest Airlines.
Delta had been the only major hub-and-spoke airline not to charge for a first checked bag. But an increase in carry-on bags "tells us that customers are not differentiating Delta'' from competitors charging the fee, said chief operating officer Steve Gorman.
For domestic trips starting Dec. 5, Delta will adopt Northwest's $15 first-bag fee and $25 charge for a second checked piece of luggage. Travelers who purchased Delta tickets today or earlier will be exempt from the first-bag fee but face the airline's current $50 charge for their second bag. All first and business class fliers, elite status members of Delta and Northwest and full-fare coach customers also are exempt.
In other changes announced Tuesday, Delta:
• Eliminated fuel surcharges of $25 to $100 to redeem Delta SkyMiles or Northwest WorldPerks frequent flier miles for award tickets originating in the United States or Canada.
• Will discontinue its $3 charge to check a bag at curbside, effective Dec. 5.
• Will reduce the fee for making a reservation by phone with a reservations agent to $20 starting Thursday. The charge for booking a frequent flier reward ticket also will drop to $20.