July 29, 2008 / 7:44 PM / 11 years ago

Delta Air doubles fee for second checked bag to $50

A Delta Airlines jet lands at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport following the announcement of a merger between Delta and Northwest Airlines in Atlanta, Georgia, April 15, 2008. REUTERS/Tami Chappell

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines on Tuesday doubled the fee to check a second bag for domestic flights to $50 from $25 to help offset record fuel prices.

Delta announced a number of baggage fee increases on domestic and international flights, including a rise in the fee for items that require special handling such as surfboards or ski equipment.

Delta also increased the fee for a third checked bag from $80 to $125 on domestic flights and from $150 to $200 on international flights. It also raised fees for bags that exceed its weight allowance.

These changes will apply to tickets bought on or after July 31 for travel on or after August 5.

“As fuel costs remain at record levels, Delta believes revising the fee structure for excess bags and specialty items is essential to generate the necessary revenues to offset record fuel costs while continuing to offer these services to customers,” the airline said in a statement.

Amid record fuel prices and a slowing U.S. economy, airlines are cutting routes, capacity and jobs and raising fares and fees to survive.

Delta said its First Class, Business Elite and Medallion customers will still be able to check up to three bags at no charge and customers on international flights can check a first and second bag at no charge.

Delta said all of its customers can still check a first bag free of charge on domestic flights and check two bags free of charge on international flights.

Reporting by Mark McSherry; editing by Leslie Gevirtz, Gary Hill

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