Spirit Airlines gives members of the military a break on bag fees

Spirit Airlines, the Florida-based carrier that has led the industry at imposing passenger fees, is giving some fliers a break.

The ultra low-cost carrier announced last month that it would no longer charge active members of the military fees for their first two checked bags and for one carry-on bag.

The airline charges as much as $45 to check your first bag and $55 for your second, depending on when you pay.

The carry-on bag fee can be as high as $100 if you pay at the gate, or $35 if you pay online.
Spirit has defended the various fees by saying the carrier gives travelers a choice to pay only what they need.

The move to give members of the military a break comes one month after Robert Fornaro took over as president and chief executive from previous airline chief, Ben Baldanza.

“After eight years of impressive growth as an ultra-lower-cost carrier, this is the first of many steps Spirit is taking to improve the overall customer experience,” Fornaro said.

Fornaro has his work cut out for him. The rate of complaints among Spirit passengers last year was about eight times than the average rate for the nation's 13 biggest carriers, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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