Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Another type of 'backpacking'

I remember my first backpacking trip. I was about ten or eleven years old and it was with my boyscout troup. I don't remember where we went or four how long; I just remember being in pain from a cheap backpack that was overloaded.

But now, it could be said I am backpacking in Europe, although I am not camping this time (not that I don't like the idea). Instead it has to do with luggage fees. As much as we complain in the United States about airline fees it seems to be a little worse here in Europe.

Most flights I have found only allow one carry on item, unlike the two allowed on airlines in the United States. And after they checked each passenger's bag before the last flight I made, I don't dare risk taking anything larger than a backpack. The flight I am taking this Friday charges 10 euros per kilogram for those checked bags not pre-checked online. The weight limit is around 23 kilograms.

I read an article today where a Senator from Louisiana has proposed a bill to either tax airlines who charge a fee for the first checked bag, or require them to allow one free checked bag. I like the second idea somewhat. The first however would off course be passed on to the consumer with higher costs, although I am not quite sure the latter wouldn't be made up with ticket costs either.

The flights are generally cheaper which is nice. I don't know what jet fuel prices are like but I know regular gas for cars is about double the price here in Huelva as it is in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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