Boomers love to travel. They have the flexibility in terms of time, the money (well, some do!) and the curiosity and the oomph that makes them want to visit new places and experience different cultures.
Well, it’s now official! “Pay by weight” or don’t travel! Tickets will be sold, not by the seat, but by the kilogram. Will this new concept introduced by Samoa Air spread like a virus to other airlines? Well it could – given the rising fuel costs and growing obesity epidemic. Could this therefore, put a spanner in the works with regard to senior travel?
Samoa Air has become the world’s first carrier to commence with new pricing on their international flights, based on the weight of its passengers and their bags, each kilogram costing between 93 cents (American) to $1.06. This new pricing system makes Samoa Air the first airline to charge strictly by weight. They (Samoa Air) wish to raise public awareness regarding obesity and health issues in their country. Samoa’s Director General of Health, Palanitina Toelupe, said the airline’s plans could be a good way to promote weight loss and healthy eating.
It’s not all bad. Some folk can travel for considerably less than before. And if all else fails, there’s always train trips or cruising!
Samoa Airlines CEO, Chris Langton, said that “planes are run by weight and not by seat, and travellers should be educated on this important issue. The plane can only carry a certain amount of weight and that weight needs to be paid for. There is no other way.”
A Norway-based Economist recently estimated that each two pounds of weight that a plane loses will result in an annual saving of $3 000 in fuel costs. And there is a safety issue, many crashes have occurred if a plane is above its allowable takeoff weight and is out-of-balance. The “assumed weight” for each flight, which is based on safety considerations, is 180 pounds per passenger
What is your opinion? Do you support the “weigh more, pay more/pay-as-you-weigh” concept or not?