A hole the size of a football suddenly opened up the fuselage of a Southwest 737 as it climbed out of Nashville on Monday, sucking out a piece of the cabin ceiling and depressurizing the jet in a roaring rush of air that no doubt scared the hell out of everybody on board.
How long will it be before we consumers are forced to pay the 2 or 3 percent fee that credit card companies charge airlines, cruise lines and other travel providers? How about now.
United Airlines is requiring some travel agencies to pay the merchant fees that credit card companies charge on each transaction. The agencies, serving mostly business travelers, must pass the expenses on to customers. (For now, United still pays the fees when passengers book directly with the airline or use large online agencies like Expedia, Travelocity or Orbitz.)