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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -
Samoa Air, an airline which services several island nations in the South Pacific, has become the first major carrier to announce a ticket fare policy based on the weight of passengers and their luggage, according to a statement on the company's website.
3 News in New Zealand reports that the ticket fares range from between $.44 cents and $1.96 U.S. dollars per kilogram, depending on the duration of the flight. The news outlet says that a person who weighs 75 kilograms, or about 165 pounds, who travels between Western Samoa and American Samoa with 15 kilograms (about 33 pounds) of luggage will be charged a total of about $65 dollars.
In a statement posted on the company's website, the airline called the fare policy "simple" and says that passengers get to decide how much their tickets cost.
"We at Samoa Air are keeping airfares fair, by charging our passengers only for what they weigh. You are the master of your Air'fair', you decide how much (or little) your ticket will cost. No more exorbitant excess baggage fee's, or being charged for baggage you may not carry. Your weight plus your baggage items, is what you pay for. Simple. The sky is the limit."
Hawaii News Now viewers reacted to the new policy on our Facebook page, many voicing displeasure over the pay-as-you-weigh fares.
"Weight is a sensitive and highly personal issue," said Gareth Au. "I don't think they should be asking people how much they weigh. If you must, charge people instead by the number of seats you occupy; like say if a large person needs two seats to sit comfortably."
Others said they thought the fare policy made sense.
"Fuel consumption is effected by weight and distance," said Ryan Yamada. "The heavier you are, the more fuel is burned. Now add yourself, plus your luggage."