You can now read 10 articles each month for free on BostonGlobe.com.

The Boston Globe

Business

Hate airline baggage fees? Needham man is to blame

His idea buoyed beleaguered carriers, and incensed everyone else

John Thomas is a mild-mannered airline consultant, a cheerful native of Australia with a ready laugh who is known for throwing great parties at his Needham home. So why do his friends want to stick pins into a voodoo doll of his likeness?

Thomas, 54, is the guy who brought baggage fees to airlines in North America. He first advised carriers to start charging for checked luggage in 2008, setting off a chain reaction that saw one airline after another adopt the charge and opening the floodgates for a steady stream of other new fees.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than $1 a week