Amtrak adds baggage fees for US train passengers

Passengers will get 2 free bags but have to pay $20 per bag for each extra bag.

Amtrak is going to start charging passengers for excessive baggage, beginning on Oct. 1.  

The train company says passengers will still be able to check up to two bags for free, but they will now have to pay $20 per bag for each additional bag.

Passengers will also have to pay the fee if a bag is overweight. Carry-on bags cannot exceed 50 pounds, while personal items such as purses and laptops will have to weigh 25 pounds or less.

Amtrak says is not doing this for the money, unlike airlines.

They are doing it because they are having more passengers and that means the amount of space available for bags is limited.

Amtrak has moved to differentiate itself from airlines, who – with the exception of Southwest Airlines – charge passengers for even one piece of checked bag.

Passenger groups have doubts. One of the major reasons for taking the train is that all the baggage hassle at airports doesn’t exist on trains. No hassle and no fees.

Airline baggage fees

Most U.S. airlines have been charging fees for checked bags for years. Only Southwest Airlines lets passengers check two bags for free. JetBlue Airways, which had long touted its one free checked bag policy, began charging for checked bags this summer.

Allegiant, Frontier and Spirit, meanwhile, charge for carry-on bags that are too big to fit under the seat in front of you.

Last year, airlines made $3.5 billion in baggage fees, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics in the U.S. Department of Transportation.

In Europe, easyJet and Ryanair have been infamous for their aggressive and highly profitable fees and even airlines like British Airways now charge for bags.

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