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Affordable travel possible even with high baggage fees


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Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY — With summer quickly approaching, vacation plans are upon us. If you're one of the thousands of Utahns traveling by air, expect to pay more for that checked bag.

And for some airlines, it's not just checked bags. Spirit Airlines recently announced they're going to start charging for carry-on bags — as much as 100 dollars in some cases. And that's not sitting well with summer travelers trying to beat the baggage bill.

Other passengers agreed.

"I'm not checking a bag," Loree Romriell, who was traveling to Albuquerque, said. "Why not? Because I don't want to have to pay for it."

Mark Pantelakis, who owns International Luggage company in North Salt Lake, has his packing technique down.

"When it comes to travel, you can travel in a carry on for a week? Two weeks?" he asked. " How about three weeks? In a carry on."

After 30 years in the business, Pantelakis said he does not bother with a checked bag.

"I am a carry-on man," he said.

He said he rolls his pants over from their "natural roll point" — as can be seen in the video — and places them under only necessary items:


I'm not checking a bag. Why not? Because I don't want to have to pay for it.

–Loree Romriell


  • Six shirts
  • Three pairs of pants
  • Three pairs of shoes
  • Toiletry items
  • A swimsuit

"But it doesn't look like you're going on a safari," he said.

He said don't pack more than three pairs of shoes: all you need is tennis shoes to wear on the flight, and dress shoes and sandals in your bag.

And taking Pantelakis' advice may be worth it.

Delta, American Airlines, United and US Airways all charge $25 for the first bag. Frontier charges $20, while Southwest Airlines allows travelers to check two bags for free.

And for travel outside the U.S., fees almost double.

"If you travel light and travel smart, you're going to enjoy your trip, and that's the most important thing," Pantelakis said.

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Ashley Kewish

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