December 18, 2015

No matter how much time you spend planning a trip, you can’t prepare for everything.

Whether it’s a family emergency or a last-minute work deadline, many people traveling for the holidays this year will find themselves trying to make last-minute changes to their flight reservations, only to get hit with a fee. And even if you stick with your booked flight, you could still get hit with fees for checked baggage.

The airline most likely to charge you those fees, according to federal data from 2014, is United Airlines, which collected an average of $20.07 in baggage and reservation change or cancellation fees per passenger that year. At the other end of the spectrum was Southwest Airlines, which charged just 62 cents per passenger on average. (Note that lower fees do not necessarily mean cheaper tickets; some airlines drop fees and hide the cost in airfare instead.)

See more details on this interactive chart:


The interactive includes the nine U.S. airlines that reported data to the federal Department of Transportation; airlines that comprise at least 1% of domestic flights are required to provide some of the data, while others provided it to the DOT voluntarily. The “fees” metric includes both baggage fees and reservation cancellation and change fees.

Next: Find Out Which Airline Is Best for You

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