Steak, $1.99 a pound…check. Peanuts, $3.00 a pound…check. Airline ticket, $10.00 a pound?
Major carriers around the world are now working to change their current ticketing systems to allow for charging passengers on how much they weigh, rather than the distance of the flight they are booking on.
United Airlines, Southwest Airlines and Delta Airlines have announced that starting August 1, all passengers going to all destinations will be weighed at the ticket counter and charged according by the rate-per-pound of their destination.
In an example presented by John Lagasca of the Airline Syndicated Society (ASS), a 2,900 mile trip from San Francisco to New York, will be charged a rate per pound of $8, while a 350 mile flight from San Francisco to Los Angeles is charged at $0.75 a pound.
“So, a passenger weighing in at 105 lbs taking the SF-NY flight will be charged a ticket price of $840, and a person weighing 310 lbs will be charged a fair price of $2480 for a one way fare,” Lagasca explains.
Lagasca also said that the biggest hit airlines take is actually the cost of fuel. Gone are the days when a ticket buys a seat in a plane, it is now based on how much a person adds to the total weight of the aircraft.
“This also means that if we can control the overall weight of the aircraft, we can pack in more cargo.” Lagasca said.
Lagasca ends the phone interview by saying “See, we put limits on the weight of the luggage passengers check in, it just makes sense we do this with our passengers”
Jerry Camotes, a passenger waiting for a flight in San Jose (SJC) to Orlando (ORL) said that it is just fair. “I really do not want to pay for someone who is overweight,” Camotes said. “I make sure I eat healthy to keep my weight down. I think this is a good idea.” When asked, Camotes said that he weighted “around 80 lbs, give or take a few pounds, depending on the season.” Camotes stands at 4’6″.
Meanwhile, another passenger, Sarah Dabiana, who was waiting for her flight across at the other gate from Camotes said that the new policy is “simply ridiculous”. She said that “everyone should pay the same price regardless of weight,” She also said that “it is unfair that overweight people are being discriminated by the airlines solely because of their weight.” However, when asked on how much she weighted, Dabiana simply walked away and would not comment.
Representatives from the Fat Acceptance Trust (FAT) could not be reached for comment.