Passengers flying to the U.S. on Porter Airlines now have an extra incentive to book sooner, rather than later.

The carrier says it will soon be charging a $25 checked-baggage fee on all flights between the U.S. and Canada. The new fee is a departure from their current policy which allows two carry-ons and one piece of checked luggage at no cost. However, as of August 1, passengers heading to the U.S. from Canada can expect to pay $25 for their first checked bag.

A second piece of luggage will cost travellers $35 and each subsequent bag will cost passengers $100. Those who have booked or are scheduled to fly before the start of August will not be affected.

Those flying domestic will not be charged for their first checked bag. Joining them are passengers flying on Porter's Freedom fare class who will have the fee waived. The airline says the fee comes at a time when Porter was looking to overhaul their old baggage policies while still remaining competitive.

“[Passengers] can actually take a lot more, but as part of that, we think this provides a balance, between allowing them to do that and have us still be competitive in the marketplace,” Porter Airlines' spokesperson Brad Cicero told the Toronto Star.

Porter now joins Air Canada as the second Canadian airline to charge baggage fees for U.S.-bound flights. WestJet on the other hand, doesn't charge a fee for the first checked bag on any of its flights, according to City News Toronto.

But it's not all bad news.

The airline will allow travellers to carry a bit more in their bags and suitcases. In the past, the combined weight of a passenger's luggage couldn't exceed 23 kg (50 lbs). Soon, each piece of luggage can weigh up to 23 kg (50 lbs), though overweight bags will be charged $75 per bag.

The airline will also roll out a checked baggage delivery guarantee. Porter promises all checked bags will arrive at any airport's checked baggage claim within half an hour of an aircraft arriving at the gate. Should luggage arrive late, Porter says passengers will be credited with a $25 voucher valid for future flights in a six-month window, notes Newstalk 1010.

What do you think of Porter's new policy? Let us know in the comment section or on Twitter @HPCaTravel

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