October 30, 2008

United Offers New Baggage Shipping Option

A partnership with U.S. shipping service FedEx Corp. could generate more than $1 billion for United Airlines in 2009, an airline executive said.

For a fee of $149 for one-way flights less than 1,000 miles and $179 for longer flights, passengers can have extra luggage, golf clubs, and other bulky items shipped their destination -- right to the door -- the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday.

The service will be called Door-To-Door Baggage. It is available for flights within the 48 contiguous states and should "make it more convenient and easy for customers," United spokeswoman Robin Urbanski said.

United's take is small -- 1 percent. But, it could add up over the course of a year.

And it has a psychological benefit, said Henry Harteveldt, an airline analyst. "That $149 makes a $50 fee for a passenger's second checked bag look cheap," he said.