United Ranks Second in Baggage, Reservation Change Fees | NBC Chicago
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United Ranks Second in Baggage, Reservation Change Fees

Chicago-based airline earned $651 million in baggage fee revenue last year

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    A United Airlines 747-400, the first Boeing 747 entering service in the new United livery, takes off for South Korea from San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco, Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2011. With the recent addition of the 747-400, at least one plane in each United mainline fleet has been painted in the new livery following the merger with Continental Airlines in October of last year. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

    Chicago's hometown airline comes with a lot of baggage.

    United Airlines ranked second place in both baggage fee and reservation cancellation/change fee revenues, according to 2014 data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

    In 2014, United earned $651 million in baggage fees and $802 million in reservation cancellation/change fees. Atlanta-based Delta is the only airline to exceed United on the list, coming in 1st place with $862 million in baggage fee revenue and $875 million in reservation cancellation/change fee revenue.

    Airline bag and cancellation/change fee revenue in the U.S. hit a combined total of $6.5 billion in 2014, with $3.5 billion going to baggage fees and $3 billion from reservation cancellation/change fees.

    Baggage fees accounted for 2.1 percent of the total operating revenue of passenger airlines while reservation cancellation/change fees accounted for 1.8 percent.

    U.S. passenger airlines altogether earned $169.3 billion total operative revenue in 2014. Airlines made $127.5 billion total from fares alone.

    Below is the list of U.S. passenger airlines generating the most revenue from baggage fees and reservation cancellation/change fees in 2014:

    Delta (#1 ranked in both categories)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $862 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $875 million

    United (#2 ranked in both categories)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $651 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $802 million

    American (#3 ranked in both categories)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $574 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $553 million

    U.S. Airways (#4 ranked in both categories)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $511 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $320 million

    Spirit (#5 in baggage fees, #8 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $241 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $38 million

    Frontier (#6 in baggage fees, #10 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $144 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $22 million

    Alaska (#7 in baggage fees, #6 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $120 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $92 million

    Allegiant (#8 in baggage fees, #13 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $107 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $9 million

    JetBlue (#9 in baggage fees, #5 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $83 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $155 million

    Hawaiian (#10 in baggage fees, #11 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $76 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $20 million

    Southwest (#11 in baggage fees, #14 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $73 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $8 million

    Virgin America (#12 in baggage fees, #9 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $60 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $37 million

    Sun Country (#13 in baggage fees, #12 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $15 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $2 million

    Island Air Hawaii (#14 in baggage fees, #15 in reservation cancellation/change fees)
    • Baggage fee revenue in 2014: $3.9 million
    • Reservation cancellation/change fee revenue in 2014: $600,000