Samoa Air First to Charge Passengers by Weight

by Yesha Callahan



If that plane above is the only size in Samoa Air’s fleet, I can agree with their new air fare system. Imagine if you have about seven 400 pound Samoans on that tiny ass plane. No bueno.

Samoa Airline become the first airline in the world to charge passengers by weight. According to Samoa Air’s website:

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 [sic], or being charged for baggage you may not carry. Your weight plus your baggage items, is what you pay for. Simple.


Chief Executive, Chris Langton, told Radio Australia’s Pacific Beat families have benefited the most.

“People who have been most pleasantly surprised are families, because we don’t charge on the seat requirement even though a child is required to have a seat, we just weigh them,” he said.

 “So a family of maybe two adults and a couple of mid sized kids and younger children can travel at considerably less than what they were being charged before.”

Samoa Air started flying within Samoa in 2012 and has expanded to now connect a number of Pacific island nations.

The “pay by weight” booking system requires passengers to type in their weight on the airline’s online reservation system where their fare is calculated.

Rates range from $1 a kilogram on the airline’s shortest domestic route to about $4.16 per kilogram for travel from Samoa to American Samoa.


  • Kenzy

    i am soooo not trying to funny, sarcastic or offend anyone but area the Samoan people known for being large? Like isnt it a part of their culture? they are one of the cultures where the bigger you are the more “highly valued” (for lack of better words)?? anyway it has sort of nothing to do with article but it does, i mean even if they charge by weight you are still not going to overload a plane like the one in the picture with more weight than it can handle thats how Aaliyahs plane went down.

    so for example if 4 people can fit on that plane, but a certain set of 4 people would overload the plane, the airline shouldn’t and wouldnt (i hope) still let those 4 people fly together just b/c they now paid there share/fare in their weight

    finally i know this will come off wrong, but hell as expensive as airline tickets are majority of people would get a discount. there are very few 500+ lb people as opposed to those who are considered overweight in the 200-500 lb category and most plane tickets now are 500+ dollars when u start adding in taxes etc…and thats just domestic!!! dont get me started on international, how many 900+ lb people do you know? So lets say you are overweight and weigh 530 lbs but want to go to paris, would you rather pay $900 to travel there or pay in your weight? . in that regard no i wouldnt mind getting charged by my weight, less money to pay

  • The Comment

    @ Kenzy

    It is funny. Next black hair stylist will charge u more if your hair is kinky.

    I see a very bad trend coming. Charging folks based on weight. Like…Ohhhh Ma Gawd we can’t start the Greyhound bus cause we got 2 fat men on it. It’s all down hill from here.

  • AJ

    Hair stylist already charge more, maybe you haven’t been lately. If you come into the salon without your hair being detangled you get charged more..point blank.

  • Kenzy

    i see that point, thats why i specifically mentioned that plane in the picture used, we all know those planes have a very specific weight limit and im not saying i would let them fly, but they certainly wouldnt be on the same plane for the sake of not hurting someones feelings over safety.

    in regards to hair quiet as its kept that has already been happening at least for 15 years, when i was in middle to highschool it took years for my mother to find a hair dresser who was willing to do my hair for a the “normal” price point, I was always charged more for my hair b/c of its thickness and length. im still searching for a hair stylist now, in about 2007, I was looking for hair stylist calling around, i always ask the price while on the phone then make the appointment so i can be prepared (i dont have it like that lol), well two of them when they saw me said no wonder you ask the price on the phone (as if i was trying to scam them) they were both decent but to get around this they both started charging me an extra $15 & $20 for a Trim (not cut) every single time I went when the price point i was used to was $10 extra for a trim. i had to quit them too and i havent been to a professional stylist since 2009, i put my search on hold

  • Rue.


  • The Comment

    Your right. I haven’t had my hair DONE in 10 yrs. I only get cornrows.

  • JaeBee

    You may laugh at the “ridiculousness”, but the weight of the plane affects the amount of fuel that is needed to operate it. Fuel is expensive. The more fuel that is used, the more customers will be expected to pay and the more ticket prices will rise and additional surcharges will be tacked on. I always found it rather ironic that airlines will charge for “overweight” luggage, but not overweight passengers. As a petite and small person I’ll get charged extra for having luggage that weighs more than 50 pounds while other people who are carrying around 50 pounds of excess body fat get charged nothing extra. Even with my luggage, I’m sure that the total weight I would contribute to the plane would still be less than someone with 50 pounds excess body weight. At the very least I shouldn’t be charged any extra for my luggage when I don’t contribute much else to the weight/fuel use of the plane.

  • Danny

    If you think it’s unfair to charge people based on their weight, then its CERTAINLY unfair to be charging them for other peoples’ weights..Think about it, if extra weight uses extra fuel, and that increases airlines costs, which they pass on to the passengers. If everyone paid the same, then someone bringing 140 pounds of themselves onto the plane would pay the same as some 250 pound person with huge bags, and I think thats a lot less fair than making someone step on a scale to calculate their rate.

  • Hiccups

    I see no problem. The heavier you are, the more fuel that’s burned. Don’t be fat. If you’re too big, you gotta pay for an extra seat which limits somebody else from not being able to take that flight.

    Bigger people take up more space and burn more fuel.

  • Chanela17

    Why is it okay to generalize Samoans by saying that they’re all 400lbs? If it was a non black person writing his about black folks, there would be an epic uproar. Smh

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