By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Veteran Pilot Captain, Gerry Gouveia believes that Caribbean Airline’s (CAL) announcement of changes to its baggage policy is the direction that many other carriers will have to take because of the increased overhead expenses and emerging human resource that is being demanded of many airlines.
CAL’s policy will now see travelers on the airline only being allowed one carry on piece and one checked bag for free. The second checked bag will now carry a US$25 charge with additional taxes. Currently, travelers are allowed one carry on and two checked-in bags for free.
“This is what most airlines is the world is going to; in fact if you fly with any US carrier in the US and Canada that is exactly what is going on. CAL has been very generous in not embracing that policy for quite a long time…it is what is happening unfortunately because of all of the issues of airlines and all of the challenges they face in keeping viable financially,” Gouveia told iNews today during a telephone interview.
Additionally, he explained that unlike many international carriers, the Region has not reached the point as yet where it is forced to have passengers pay additional sums for necessary services.
“Luckily we haven’t gotten there as yet but I think it’s coming…with all of the new regulations to do with safety and security to do with the amount of pilots you now have to have because of the stringent rules that dictates crew reps, so you have to have more pilots because the pilots are working less hours because of the extra crews the flight attendants and so on; so you have to hire more people because of the new regulations to do with safety and security and the general expense of maintaining aircraft.”
According to CAL, the new policy will be implemented in two phases. Phase one takes effect on tickets purchased on or after December 18, 2014 for travel from January 15, 2015, on all flights between the Caribbean and Toronto.
Phase two takes effect on tickets purchased on or after February 1, 2015 for travel from April 15, 2015, on all flights throughout the rest of the network.
Additionally the airline stated that customers who purchased fully flexible fares in W, Y and K categories will be exempted from the new policy, along with Caribbean Miles members in Executive Gold, Gold and Silver Tier level and 7th Heaven Rewards Executive Gold, Gold and Silver Tier levels.