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Comparing Other Optional Service Fees

Airlines charge extra for services including priority boarding and travel arrangements for unaccompanied minors. The fees listed here apply to passengers traveling on domestic flights in the lowest fare class. Some are waived for passengers in higher fare classes and/or frequent fliers who have reached a certain status in an airline's loyalty program. Unaccompanied minor services are generally available for children between 5 and 17 but may not be required for ages 12 to 17. They are assessed each way and usually limited to nonstop or direct flights. Preferred seats may include aisle and window seats toward the front of the plane, bulkhead seats, and/or emergency-exit-row seats. Premium coach seating generally constitutes extra legroom and priority boarding. Most airlines still offer complimentary soft drinks, juice, coffee, and tea (and sometimes a snack, as well), but a few have started charging even for nonalcoholic drinks. To keep up with these ever-changing fees and see additional charges, click through to the airlines' websites.
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Ticketing
Unaccompanied Minors
Seat Selection
Premium Seating
Priority Boarding
Nonalcoholic Drinks
AirTran
$15 by phone
$50
$0; $10-$30 for preferred
N/A
$10
$0*
Alaska
$15 by phone
$25 nonstop/direct; $50 connecting
$0
N/A
N/A
$0
Allegiant
$10/segment online; $15/segment by phone
N/A
$0-$75
N/A
$5
$2
American
$25 by phone; $20-$35 in person
$100
$0; $4-$99 for preferred
$8-$159 for Main Cabin Extra
$9; included with Main Cabin Extra; $0 for passengers without overhead baggage
$0
Delta
$25 by phone; $35 in person
$100
$0; $9-$59 for preferred
$9-$99 for Economy Comfort
$10; included with Economy Comfort
$0*
Frontier
$0
$100 with Frontier booking; $150 with third-party booking
$3 prior to travel, $8 at check-in for standard seats; $5 with purchase, $15 otherwise for Select (Frontier bookings only)
$15-$100 for Stretch seating
Included with Stretch (Zone 1) and Select (Zone 2)
$2
JetBlue
$25 by phone or in person
$100
$0
$10-$90 for Even More Space
Included with Even More Space
$0*
Southwest
$0
$50
N/A (no assigned seats)
N/A
$12.50 for EarlyBird Check-In; $40 for guaranteed Group A (Southwest boards by groups based on check-in order)
$0*
Spirit
$10 by phone; $9 or $17/one way online and by phone, $0 at airport (Passenger Usage Fee); $2/one way except on certain discount fares (Unintended Consequences of DOT Regulations Fee); $10 to print boarding pass at airport
$100
$1-$50
$12-$150 for Big Front Seat
N/A
$2-$3
United
$25 by phone; $30 in person
$150
$0
$9 to $215 for Economy Plus
Starting at $9/segment for Premier Access; included with Economy Plus
$0
US Airways
$25 by phone; $35 at airport
$100
$0; $19-$99 for ChoiceSeats
N/A
$10 for PreferredAccess; included with ChoiceSeats
$0
Virgin America
$20 by phone
$75-$125 depending on flight duration
$0; $30 for Main Cabin Express
$39-$159 for Main Cabin Select
Included with preferred/premium seating options
$0-$3

* Includes snack

by Louis DeNicola (Google+ Profile)

In this review:
  1. Airline Fees Guide
  2. Baggage Fees
  3. Change and Cancellation Fees
  4. Priority Boarding and Other Charges
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Filed in: Airfare, Airlines, Airports,
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