Who the hell flies with just a carryon?
Apparently American Airlines thinks enough people do that they want to charge you fifteen dollars to check the first (or often only) bag.
In so doing, they're stepping out beyond the money-grubbingness of most other airlines and putting themselves in a class by themselves. I suspect the class is called "future bankrupt airlines."
Yeah, yeah, their fuel costs have gone way up. So have everybody else's. But who the hell is going to fly an expensive airline like American when they feel like they're getting nickel-and-dimed for every damn thing? They might as well just fly Southwest, where at least they know up front they're getting nickel-and-dimed. Nobody who flies an expensive, old-line long-haul airline like American is likely to fly without bags, so why don't they just be honest and just jack up the ticket prices to cover the fuel costs, so everyone shares? All this is gonna do is encourage people to bring ever-more-overstuffed shit on the plane and try to jam it into the overhead, slowing everyone down at loading and unloading.
Are you out there thinking, "well, why should I pay to fly someone's suitcase somewhere?" Well, if you are, bite me. If you can fly across the country and have only a carry-on, I submit that you should change your clothes more frequently, and that carryon won't have enough in them to prevent you reeking on your return trip. And what's to stop thin people from then demanding that they not pay as much as someone overweight? Or the childfree demanding that parents actually have to BUY THAT KID A GODDAMN SEAT THANK YOU?
American will go down a hole. They're trying to play Southwest's game, but they and most other old-school carriers suck at it. Annoying your best customers by sticking your hand out for things that should be included in the price of the ticket. Annoying your customers is a three-point landing in hell.