Road Warrior

What's next for airline fees? More ways to pay

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Although the latest numbers may show a slight decline in how much passengers are paying airlines to check their bags, the long- term trend is clearly heading in the other direction.

"They're going to go up," predicted Jay Sorensen, the president of IdeaWorks, a research firm that advises the industry. "The airlines are always testing higher rates to see if it will fly."

"I think the big push now, internationally you still get a free bag, and I suspect that will change in the next two years," Sorensen said. "And free bags as an economy-class passenger will disappear within three years, practically worldwide."