Hungarian no-frills airline Wizz Air has become the first carrier in Europe to charge passengers for carry-on luggage.
Passengers booking Wizz Air tickets for travel from 24 October 2012 will only be allowed to carry a small cabin bag of up to 42 x 32 x 25cm free of charge. Any other kind of bags taken as hand luggage will come with a £9-per-bag fee.
According to Travel News, the airline previously tested the new baggage policy on its Luton Airport to Katowice (Poland) route, and claims very good results. Since 1 August this year, passengers on the route have been paying 10 euros for a larger piece of cabin baggage.
The airline's new policy is to control the problem of lack of storage space on smaller aircrafts.
In a statement, chief financial officer of Wizz Air, Michael Powell, said: 'When it comes to low fares Wizz Air knows no half measures! Wizz Air is announcing its new and innovative cabin baggage policy after a successful trial confirmed that more onboard space and cost savings are achieved when passengers bring less large bags into the cabin.
'With the vast majority of passengers willing to bring smaller bags on board we are now the first European carrier to eliminate a chronic problem in the airline industry faced by all airlines.
He added: 'We leave it for high fare airlines to tackle their costs by raising fares and levying unavoidable fuel surcharges while Wizz Air passengers will continue to pay only for the services they use.
'Today we encourage our passengers to travel smart and bring only a small bag on board. To pass on the expected cost savings we are immediately discounting by £4.50 all fares available for booking under the new cabin bag policy at wizzair.com.'
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