Jetstar has lowered the cost of checking in a bag at the airport as it prepares to introduce cabin baggage officers at the departure gate.
The six-month trial at Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns and Gold Coast airports starts on Monday October 13, with the dedicated crew to monitor passengers’ carry-on luggage to ensure they are within weight and size limits.
The Qantas-owned low-cost carrier said it would reduce the fee for checking in a bag at the airport from $70 to $50 as part of the trial.
The fee reduction was similar to recent moves from low-cost competitor Tigerair Australia, which is currently offering a 40 per cent discount on baggage fees for passengers who exceeded their limits. The discount was first applied in September, when Tigerair announced increased monitoring of passengers’ carry-on luggage, and was in place for three months.
Jetstar said the 30 cabin baggage officers would help other staff focus on safe and secure boarding and help maintain the airline’s punctuality.
It was not about generating more revenue.
“We’ve introduced these roles and reduced the fee to help change customer behaviour,” a Jetstar spokesman said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Ultimately, every customer should be able to fly in comfort with their allocated amount of cabin baggage.
“We don’t want this fee to be a revenue stream for us as we’d prefer for our customers to understand and comply with our baggage policy.”
Jetstar allows passengers to take 10kg of carry-on luggage on Australian domestic flights, consisting of one main item and one other small item.
“Any piece of baggage that doesn’t fit with the requirements above will need to be checked-in and charges may apply,” the Jetstar website says.
Jetstar was one of the best airlines in terms of generating ancillary revenues, according to an IdeaWorks Company report published in July 2014. The report said Jetstar had 20.6 per cent of its total revenue come from ancillary revenue in 2013, the seventh highest among the 59 carriers surveyed.