Full Article at http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/06/13/business/bags.php Source: Herald Tribune For weeks, American Airlines stood alone in facing the ire of passengers over its decision to begin charging $15 to check the first bag. But it now has some company. United Airlines said Thursday it would put the charge into effect Friday, two days earlier than American. The $15 fee, for passengers flying on leisure fares booked in advance, is on top of a $25 fee for checking a second suitcase that airlines began charging recently. And US Airways said Thursday that it, too, was matching the $15 fee but would not put it into effect until July 9. Elite members of its frequent-flier program are exempt, but US Airways said its charge would apply to flights to and from Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean, meaning its program was broader than its rivals'. Airlines are attributing new fees and surcharges to high fuel prices, up 91.5 percent from this time last year, according to the International Air Transport Association.