Cheapflights launches stealth costs service

Cheapflights has unveiled a new service that it says will reveal the “hidden extras” associated with airfares, such as costs for seat selection and extra baggage.

The new section is contained in the price comparison site’s Travel Tips section and includes information on over 20 of the top airlines.

Other information includes extra charges levied at passengers for food and entertainment during flights.

Chief executive David Soskin said: “Cheapflights believes that consumers deserve the opportunity to compare like-for-like when purchasing airline tickets.

“Low-cost may not be so low once you add charges for extra baggage, entertainment and a sandwich onto the ticket price, but purchasers should be able to make their selections based on their priorities.

“After all, a business traveller with a single briefcase requires different services than a family of four with two hungry children.”

The European Union this week unveiled proposals created to give passengers adequate information for all charges produced by airlines.

The new policy, introduced by transport commissioner Jacques Barrot, would force airlines to include all charges in the published price for an air ticket.

Soskin said: “Barrot’s decision to demystify airline ticket pricing is a step in the right direction. We’re glad to see that consumer demands are being met – and Cheapflights is determined to lead the way to make air travel less confusing and more affordable.”

The new service follows the introduction of a call centre “cheat sheet” earlier this year, which gives users instructions to reach airline customer service staff directly by telephone.

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