Most airlines weigh your luggage at check-in, and charge an overweight fee if your bag is too heavy. And now, Samoa Air has become the world's first air carrier to charge passengers according to their weight. Eat too much on vacation and tip the scale too far, and you’ll be charged an overweight passenger fee.
The rates range from $1 a kilogram for the weight of the traveller and their baggage on short hauls, to about $4.16 per kilogram for travel from Samoa to the neighboring nation of American Samoa.
Samoa, and the other Pacific Islands are known for people “of a certain size,” Samoa appears regularly in lists of the top 10 heaviest countries with 80% plus of the population aged 15 and over overweight.
At first we thought it might all be an April Fool’s Day joke (check back for updates if we find out this is true). However, it’s now the 2nd and the airline appears to be still standing by their plan.
The airline calls the program "pay only for what you weigh" and describes the system on its website: "Booking a flight with us is as easy as inputting your approximate weight into our online booking engine (don't worry, we will weigh you again at the airport) – you then can prepay your 'guesstimate', guaranteeing you that much weight is allocated to you for that flight … with Samoa Air, you are the master of how much (or little!) your air ticket will cost."
So while it is great for those traveling with lightweight kids, make sure you don’t travel to Samoa with the likes of Madea on her family vacation.