You may have heard that Spirit Airlines is planning to raise its carry-on baggage fees for both domestic and international travel come November 6.  And while much of the chatter is over a new $100 carry-on baggage fee, I felt it my duty as your travel guru to give you a bit of reassurance: if you plan ahead you probably won’t be paying $100.  Why?

FrankKovalchek via Flickr
Well, the high $100 price tag is only charged to travelers who check their carry-on bag at the gate.  As long as you pay upfront for your carry-on bag at either a check-in counter, self-check kiosk or better yet, online, you’ll be paying much, much less.  Here’s how the fees break down:

Pay for carry-on bag online:   $35 (up from $30)

Pay for carry-on bag at kiosk or counter:  $50 (up from $40)

Pay for carry-on bag at gate:  $100

Give yourself plenty of time to check-in and you should save yourself a good chunk of change!  But if you’re like me and refuse to pay even $35 for a carry-on bag, start packing all of your items in a pliable backpack or bag that can squeeze comfortably under the seat in front of you.  Unlike bags in the overhead bins, personal items that stowe under your seat cost you nothing!  More on my favorite carry-on packing tips later this week.