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For $100 Million, Southwest Learns to Love Bag Fees

Gary Kelly, CEO of Southwest Airlines Co., speaks at an event to mark the
completion of Southwest's acquisition of AirTran Holdings at Hartsfield
Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., on Monday, May 2, 2011.

Gary Kelly, CEO of Southwest Airlines Co., speaks at an event to mark the completion of Southwest's acquisition of AirTran Holdings at Hartsfield Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., on Monday, May 2, 2011. Photograph by Chris Rank/Bloomberg

If there was ever any doubt how much U.S. airlines heart their fees, look to Southwest. Today, the “bags fly free” airline touted to Wall Street a bevy of fee increases for its AirTran subsidiary:

• $10 more to check a second bag (now $35)
• $5 more to check a first bag (now $25)
• $50 more for overweight bags (now $100)