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If you flew American Airlines during the last few years, listen up — you may be owed some money. It seems that some travelers were promised a free checked bag only to be told later they had to pay. To end a class action lawsuit, American Airlines is now paying their customers a $7.5 million settlement.

This settlement is happening just as a bunch of airlines have been ordered to give customers refunds for their canceled or substantially delayed flights. American Airlines is just the latest in a list of class action settlements, and if you’re looking for more ways to get American Airlines cheap tickets, KCL is here to help.

Here’s what you need to know:


Why is American Airlines in a class action settlement?

American Airlines boarding gate

It all started when five customers filed a lawsuit, claiming that American Airlines agents required them to pay baggage fees for bags that should have been eligible for free checked baggage.

Free checked bags are often a perk for frequent fliers, first-class and business-class travelers, or airline credit card holders. In some cases, travelers were told via email or at checkout that they would get one free checked bag on their flight only to find out at the gate that they had to pay a baggage fee (at least $30).

This is the second time American Airlines has been sued for charging surprise baggage fees. The airline was sued in 2018 for $9 million. In both cases, American Airlines has admitted no wrongdoing.


How much is the American Airlines settlement for?

American Airlines baggage handlers

American Airlines has agreed to pay customers at least $7.5 million for their unexpected baggage fees. We say “at least” because if the total baggage fees exceed this amount, the settlement administrator will increase the payments made to class action members.

At $30 a pop for baggage fees, the $7.5 million will pay for 250,000 bags.


Do I qualify for the American Airlines settlement?

Crowded airport security section

First of all, to qualify for the settlement, you had to have checked a bag for a U.S. flight on or after Feb. 24, 2017, and had bought your ticket before April 9, 2020. From there, if any of these things apply to you, you qualify for the settlement:

  • You received email confirmation of one or more free checked bags
  • You have an American Airlines Citi credit card (that allows one free checked bag per flight)
  • You have an American Airlines branded Barclay’s credit card (that allows one free checked bag per flight)



How much will I get paid?

American airlines sign

If you qualify, you’ll receive a full refund on your checked bag fees. These fees range from $30 for one checked bag to $200 for four or more checked bags.


How can I file a claim?

To file a claim or to learn more about the lawsuit and the settlement, visit www.BaggageFeeClassAction.com and click the “Claim Form” section. The form will ask for your name, mailing address, and date of birth. You can also put your frequent flyer number in; although you don’t need a proof of purchase to submit a claim, American Airlines will use this information to verify whether you qualify for the settlement.

Remember to file your claim by March 15, 2023, in order to receive your full baggage refund.


How and when will I get paid?

It’s gonna be awhile. Although no official payout date has been listed, based on other class action lawsuits, you can expect payouts to begin shortly after the settlement’s final hearing on Friday, May 5, 2023.

There’s no word as to how payments will be distributed.


Are You Owed Baggage Fees in the American Airlines Settlement?