Quick Tip: How to Avoid Excess Baggage Fees

Posted by on Wednesday July 25, 2018 | Business, Photo Gear

Celebrity photographer Andrew Hetherington's forlorn travel bag. See his travel advice in "Pro Photographers' Favorite Travel Hacks." ©Andrew Hetherington

Clients are so budget-conscious that every dollar you save on expenses counts. And airline fees can add up quickly. In our story “Pro Photographers’ Favorite Travel Hacks,” several photographers shared their strategies for avoiding excess baggage fees.

“Use curbside check-in to help with overweight [equipment cases],” Christopher Testani recommends. “If you use curbside check-in and tip the SkyCaps well, they are much more lenient with excess baggage fees. If you fly often enough from the same place, develop a relationship with the guys working curbside, and they can really help out if you’re in a pinch.”

Nick Hall agrees. “We literally save thousands of dollars per year on baggage fees and our [SkyCap] often grabs great seats for us as an extra favor.” Hall also advises you “have an up-to-date subscription to a professional media group like [American Photographic Artists]. Then you can use your media card to secure cheaper baggage fees.”

Another way to avoid oversize bag fees is to “pack your tripod and lighting stands in a golf bag or snowboard bag,” advises Amanda Friedman. “Most airlines don’t charge oversize bag fees for sporting gear.”

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