How Much Do Airlines Rake in from Fees? More than $31 Billion

baggage fees, checked bag fees, fees for overweight bags, carry-on bags policy

Those little extras sure add up: $5 glass of wine, $50 bag fee, $200 change fee. But did you know they add up to billions?

Four fees you should never, ever pay

1200% Increase Since 2007

According to a newly-released joint report from CarTrawler/IdeaWorks, last year airlines from around the world took in ancilliary revenue – or fees – of more than $31.5 billion. Here's another startling figure: Fee revenue has jumped by 1,200 percent since 2007.

Fees through the Years

What global airlines overall rake in. See all the statistics in the CarTrawler/IdeaWorks annual report.

Airline Ancillary Revenue by Year

201359 airlines$31.5 billion
201253 airlines$27.1 billion
201150 airlines$22.6 billion
201047 airlines$21.46 billion
200947 airlines$13.47 billion
200835 airlines$10.25 billion
200723 airlines$2.45 billion

Which Airlines Earned the Most from Fees

Note which airline in sixth place – despite offering two checked-bags for free. Hello, Southwest!

Top Airline Ancillary Revenue Earners for 2013

United$5.703 billion
Delta$2.528 billion
American$2.079 billion
Air France/KLM$1.715 billion
Ryanair$1.689 billion
Southwest$1.624 billion


Airlines: Fees as Biggest Percentage of Total Revenue

Fees can really add to an airline's bottom line. Notice that the biggest beneficiaries are all low cost carriers.

Ancillary Revenue as a % of Total Revenue – 2013

Wizz Air34.9%




Anne McDermott
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