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Fri, Oct 31, 2008

United Airlines Introduces Door-to-Door Baggage Service

Wow! You Can Now Pay Even MORE To Send Your Luggage!!!

Hoping to stake out a presence in the increasingly lucrative overnight baggage shipping market -- while also reducing the number of checked bags on its planes -- this week United Airlines became the first US airline to offer luggage shipping via an overnight courier.

United says its new "Door-to-Door Baggage" service enables customers in the continental US to ship their suitcases, or other travel items like skis or golf clubs, overnight from a home or office directly to their destination within the 48 contiguous United States. For the convenience, United will charge passengers $149 one way for flights less than 1,000 miles, or $179 for longer flights -- prices it maintains are "simple and more economical" than similar overnight services.

The beleaguered airline hopes the added convenience of the service will offset the steep pricetag.

"Door-to-Door Baggage is another new service from United's Travel Options portfolio that puts more choices into the hands of our customers and provides them with the flexibility to customize their own travel experiences," said Dennis Cary, senior vice president and Chief Marketing and Customer Officer. "While offering customers a new benefit, it also provides United with a new revenue stream that, when combined with our other ancillary revenue and fee initiatives, is expected to generate more than one billion dollars in 2009."

Of course, those passengers disinclined from contributing to any new revenue streams for United -- or any airline, for that matter -- may opt to ship their bags via any number of private luggage shipping firms, as well, albeit for more money.

There's also this old standby: find a big box, and ship your bag via UPS or FedEx 2-Day Ground... for a LOT less money. This option also carries the added benefit of not having a single TSA or airline worker lay their hands on your belongings.

FMI: www.united.com/traveloptions

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