Charging an airfare based on weight has been joked about, but innovative Air New Zealand has once again showed its astute commercial approach by being the first airline in the world to actually charge passengers based on weight, effective for flights booked starting today.
"The bean counters tell us more weight = more fuel = more cost, so we are introducing a new pay what you weigh fare," Air NZ says. The fare structure "will allow you to combat the recent rise in ticket prices with a health conscious twist" that will help passengers "decrease your airfare and your waistline at the same time".
Under details of the programme, during booking passengers will be asked to enter their age and weight and then charged, depending on age and sex, 30-100 New Zealand cents (US$0.23-0.77) per kilo.
Air NZ warns cheeky passengers looking to skim on their true weight that passengers will be weighed at the traditional check in process that the carrier has re-named "weigh in".
"Yes, we will check when you get to the airport," Air NZ says. "We'll collect any additional fare due at that time so make sure you lay off the pies and Tim Tams before you travel. Remember a golf ball of fat could end up costing you $$$."
To book your seat today, visit grabaseat.
Update: Air NZ has pulled the calculator and replaced it with this message as it is end of April Fools'. (Although based on feedback, some of you would have liked "pay what you weigh" to be true!)