Airline Priority Boarding and Other Charges

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 flyers 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/Preferred Seating
Premium Seating
Priority Boarding
Amenities
Alaska
$15 by phone
$25 nonstop/direct; $50 connecting
Free
$15-$50
N/A
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; free streaming video; $8-$10 in-flight entertainment player; $2-$40 Wi-Fi
Allegiant
$15/segment by phone; up to $8 each way for credit card processing; $5 to print boarding pass at airport
Free (under 15 not allowed)
$0-$80
N/A
$4-$12
$2-$7 drinks and snacks; no Wi-Fi or in-flight entertainment
American
$25 by phone; $35 in person; $10-$16 extended hold (3-7 days on eligible itineraries)
$150
Free; $4-$139 for preferred
$20-$280 for Main Cabin Extra
$9-$45; included with Main Cabin Extra
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; free in-seat entertainment; $2.50-$50 Wi-Fi
Delta
Free
$150
Free; approx. $9 and up for preferred
Approx. $14 and up for Comfort Plus
$15; included with Comfort Plus
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; free in-seat entertainment; $4.95 and up Wi-Fi
Frontier
$10 by phone
$110
$6 and up for standard seats; discounted Kid Zone seat selection available
$20 and up for Stretch seating
Included with The Perks (from $49) and The Works (from $59) packages
$2 and up drinks and snacks (prices vary); no Wi-Fi or in-flight entertainment
JetBlue
$25 by phone or in person
$100
Free
Approx. $10-$95 for Even More Space seats
$10; $15 for expedited security where available (included with Even More Space)
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; free in-seat entertainment and Wi-Fi; $5-$6 blanket/pillow
Southwest
Free
$50
N/A (no assigned seats)
N/A
$15 for EarlyBird Check-In; $30-$40 for guaranteed Group A*
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; $0-$5 in-seat entertainment; $8 Wi-Fi
Spirit
$35 by phone; $8.99 or $17.99 Passenger Usage Fee (each way, except at airport); $2 Unintended Consequences of DOT Regulations Fee (each way); $2 at kiosk or $10 at counter to print boarding pass at airport
$100
$1-$50
$12-$199 for Big Front Seat
$5.99 for Shortcut Boarding (Zone 2); up to $15 for Shortcut Security
$2 and up drinks and snacks; no Wi-Fi or in-flight entertainment
United
$25 by phone; $35 in person
$150
Free
$9 and up for Economy Plus
Starting at $15/segment for Premier Access
Free non-alcoholic drinks and snacks; free in-seat entertainment/United Private Screening device available on some flights; Wi-Fi varies
Virgin America
$20 by phone
$75-$125
Free; $10-$40 for preferred
$39-$199 for Main Cabin Select
$19 for priority boarding and security
Free non-alcoholic drinks; $3-$5 snacks; free live Dish Network TV; $4.95-$39.95 Wi-Fi; $10 pillow/blanket

* Southwest boards by group based on check-in order, starting with Group A.