WestJet to charge $25 for first checked bag

Fee applies to flights within Canada and the U.S.

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plane_0511_322CALGARY – WestJet Airlines (TSX:WJA) says it will charge a $25 fee for the first checked bag for passengers travelling on economy fares within Canada and also between Canada and the U.S.

The new fee will apply to bookings starting Monday for travel as of Oct. 29. WestJet says the new charge is expected to affect one in five of its travellers since different baggage allowances apply to those in other fare classes or those using its new loyalty program also launched Monday.

Passengers flying to international destinations, including Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and Europe will continue to be able to check a first bag at no charge.

Baggage allowances for military personnel, infant and child equipment, mobility devices, and those travelling in connection with other airlines are not affected.

The Calgary-based carrier charges all customers for a second checked bag.

Air Canada (TSX:AC.B) is expected to follow suit and charge for first checked bags on flights within Canada, as it does for service to the United States. Porter Airlines began charging $25 for the first bag and $35 for a second bag checked on domestic travel as of May.

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