Spirit Airlines raises online booking fee

NEW YORK (AP) ? Spirit Airlines Inc. is nearly doubling the fee it charges to book domestic tickets online.

The Miramar-Fla. company increased its “passenger usage fee” from $8.99 each way to $16.99 last week, according to spokeswoman Misty Pinson. The international fee fell $2 each way to $16.99.

Spirit aims to charge its passengers low base fares but then adds a bevy of fees for everything from placing a carry-on bag in the overhead bin to having a glass of water onboard. In January it plans to start charging $5 for each boarding pass a ticket agent prints.

The passenger usage fee is charged to anyone buying tickets online, which are the bulk of Spirit’s sales. Anybody who treks to the airport to buy a ticket can avoid the fee.