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Continental and US Airways Announce Service Fees

The days of booking on the telephone for free are over. Continental and US Airways announced $5 fees for telephone bookings, including reward travel (platinum members have the fees waved). I’m a proponent of the fees for the most part, but the $5 is an annoyance for frequent flyer tickets which are often too complicated for online bookings. International travel, especially when connections with partner airlines are involved, are virtually impossible to do online. What’s most annoying, as I may have pointed out before, is that it is the airlines’ most loyal travelers who have the 200,000 miles to book business class tickets to Nairobi on a partner carrier, but now face a small-but-insulting $5 fee to actually book those tickets. Not a show stopper, but certainly an annoyance. Even so, for the vast, vast majority of telephone bookings the $5 fee is a good call by the airlines, and one that people will gladly pay over time.

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