Whether it’s a remote-controlled airline seat or baggage fees based on the colour of your suitcase, the day of the week or even your height, there’s no limit to how far North American airlines can innovate.
Or if you’re after something literally ‘out of this world’, Europe has you covered as well this April Fools’ Day – if you take these at face value, of course!
Southwest Airlines to charge for coloured baggage
Tired of excess cash lining your pockets? Southwest Airlines is here to help with a new ‘flying colours fee’, levied when passengers travel with a red, yellow, green, chartreuse or plaid suitcase on weekdays.
You’ll pay only US$401.15 for the privilege – unless you’re a teenager or over six feet tall and flying on Wednesdays, where you can take advantage of ‘double fee day’ and part with US$802.30 instead.
The fees don’t apply to bags with four wheels or power steering, although owners of two-wheeled bags will need to apply for a fee exemption over a year before they intend to travel.
WestJet launches portable economy ‘smart seats’
Do you find lines at the airport an inconvenience – having to stand while there’s a perfectly good seat is waiting for you on the plane?
Canadian airline WestJet comes to the rescue with the launch of new economy ‘smart seats’, where your seat in the lounge or at the boarding gate is also your seat on the flight.
Getting from A to B is simple – just use the seats’ in-built motorised wheels to navigate yourself through the airport, before applying the brakes once on-board and settling in for the journey ahead.
SAS introduces space travel, Astro Class
Set to rival Virgin Galactic, Scandinavian Airlines is on-track to launch commercial space travel in 2020.
Dubbed ‘Astro Class’, passengers won’t merely fly to the moon and back, but can travel from one side of the world to the other, via space, in around half an hour.
Travellers can also relax in new, free-floating Astro Luxury Lounges prior to their journey and can earn AstroBonus points for future spaceflights.
Virgin America moves to Branson, Missouri
Those long and tiresome Virgin America flights from Los Angeles to New York will soon be a thing of the past, with the airline moving its hub to Branson, Missouri in honour of the airline’s founder.
That means you’ll fly from Los Angeles to Branson before making a quick and easy plane change for your onward flight to New York – perfect for avoiding DVT.
And for those shorter hops between Los Angeles and San Francisco, you’ll also now travel via Branson. It may add eight-odd hours to your travel time, but you’ll be able to take in more of the country as you fly over it from above.
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