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What else can airlines charge us for?

A Spirit Airlines Inc. plane takes off from the Fort Lauderdale International Airport in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Kai Ryssdal: And now, ladies and gentlemen, it has come to this. American Airlines says economy-class passengers on its domestic flights are going to have to pay to stay warm. Starting May 1st -- just in time for the summer rush -- a pillow and blanket set will be available for 8 bucks. So how many more formerly free luxuries do you suppose airlines can possibly charge for? The Marketplace Players say, oh, lots more.


Rico Gagliano: Good afternoon, everybody, this is your captain speaking. We've reached our cruising altitude. Just want to give you a quick rundown of the amenities available for purchase on this flight.

In a few minutes we'll be cutting off the supply of oxygen in the economy cabin. Additional oxygen can be purchased for a nickel per minute, just slip your coins into the slot in the armrest. Exact change is required. If you need change, our attendants will provide it to you, for an additional fee of $1 per nickel.

In about an hour, we'll be flying over the Grand Canyon, and you can take a look by inserting a $5 bill in the slot beside your window. The window shade will pop up for exactly 23 seconds.

Thirty dollars to use the restroom -- $10 a flush. And when you get back to your seat our attendants will be happy to recline it for you -- for $57. Or, for $5 they'll punch you in the head so hard you'll black out for the whole flight.

That's about it. Now just sit back, relax and enjoy the next two hours. At that point passengers who refuse to pay our $200 completion fee will be thrown off the plane 36,000 feet above Wichita, while the rest of us continue on to New York.

Thanks again for traveling with us. We know you have a lot of choices when flying, and they're all bad, so shut up.


Ryssdal: Our own Rico Gagliano wrote, produced, directed and starred for the Marketplace Players today.

About the author

Rico Gagliano co-hosts and co-produces Marketplace’s “Small Talk” segment.
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I was in the middle of dinner when this came up, I laughed I almost choked on my meal. Great piece, keep it coming Rico!

I had to stop my car on the way home!! sooo funny!!

What a great piece! I heard it in the car and had to log on to the internet to share with my boyfriend. We both enjoyed your humor! Thanks

Rico's commentary on what the airlines can charge us for next was HILARIOUS!!! Good job, Rico!

Way to go Rico! You just earned yourself a trip to the "no fly" list! Good luck!

About the only thing Mr. Gagliano left off was the take-off fee. Just because the arilines can't leave people on the tarmac for more than a few hours doesn't mean that they can't charge for a timely departure.

LMAO, but sadly, there is more truth than fiction in this spoof, eh?

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