You may have heard the news: Spirit Airlines, one of the first carriers to implement a carry-on fee, will charge up to $100 per bag starting November 6.
That’s up from $45, the current carry-on cost for customers who wait and pay at the departure gate. Even if you plan ahead, you’ll still have to fork over a fee: the carry-on price at the airport kiosk will increase to $50 from $40. (Spirit considers carry-ons to be luggage stored in the overhead bin—passengers will still be entitled to a free personal item that can fit under the seat.)
What can you do to avoid a carry-on crisis the next time you travel?
Be sure to read the fine print. If you’re flying Spirit, take a look at their online table of optional fees. You’ll find the complete list of November 6 changes (make sure to have an extra $5 for your second checked bag, which now costs $55).
Before booking any flight, uncover all hidden costs. Using a new tool from NerdWallet.com, a personal finance site, you can search and compare additional airlines charges, including those for checked bags and carry-ons.
NerdWallet combs through hundreds of fees from major domestic carriers so you can easily decide, for instance, if carrying-on is still worth it.
Briana Fasone is a digital editorial assistant at Travel + Leisure.