Airlines have always been about getting profits – like any other business. One of the ways to do that is to put more people inside their airplanes. Another way to do that, and a very lucrative one, is to have fees that those passengers pay to get things like bags, seat selection, and more. And, the more space that seat has, the more it is going to cost you. The Biden Administration is trying to make airlines be more transparent on these fees and here are President Biden’s comments today about this.
President Biden: Does He Think Airlines Are Racist?
President Biden in his remarks today called these airline fees “junk fees” when it comes to space in airplane seats. Here is the clip (it is queued up to start at the part we are talking about here – feel free to watch the whole video that also addresses resort fees):
I am not quite sure what he is referring to about the struggle of knowing these prices. That is, apparently, his issue with this is that they want the airlines to be more upfront and transparent about fees. I think US airlines have done a pretty fair job of letting people know what they are getting (or, rather, not getting) when they book a Basic Economy ticket. Here is an example from Delta Air Lines:
I don’t know what he hoped to gain with saying that this issue is more difficult for “people of color.” I am surprised that the airlines have not jumped on that already to say something about it since it does seem that he is making a sideways reference to the airlines being racist by not making these fees even more obvious than they currently are. We all know that politicians say things for a reason and slipping that line in there when talking about airlines taking advantage of people obviously is there for a reason.
Look, we all know what will happen if the government starts trying to force airlines to get rid of these fees – the airlines will just raise the regular price of tickets even more. Even with things like seats and that. As a safety issue, I do think there should be a minimum distance between the rows of seats to ensure that people can observe a crash position or to evacuate quickly. But, we know that if airlines are not able to get their profits in the ways they are doing now, we will still be paying for it – or more – because they will just find other ways to put these fees and ticket prices up there.
I normally try to stay away from politics but with the elections just two weeks away, it seems like politics have intersected with one of our areas of interest – airlines and aviation – so here we are! I may shut down comments if it gets out of hand, though! 🙂