MINNEAPOLIS Northwest Airlines Corp. said Wednesday that it will cut 2,500 jobs because of high oil prices, and it will soon begin charging $15 to check luggage and up to $100 to redeem a frequent-flier award ticket.
The airline said it expects the new fees to add $250 million to $300 million a year in revenue.
Northwest said the job cuts which represent about 8.3 percent of its work force will include front-line and management workers. It said it will start with voluntary departures and leaving open jobs unfilled before moving to furloughs to reach the 2,500 total. As of the end of 2007, Northwest employed about 30,000 people.
President and Chief Executive Doug Steenland said Northwest's fuel costs have more than doubled in the past year.
"These reductions are the direct result of our extraordinary fuel costs and the necessary actions we must take to right-size our airline and eliminate unprofitable flying," Steenland said in a written statement.
Northwest also said it would begin charging $15 for the first checked bag, matching a fee announced earlier this year by US Airways, American Airlines, and United Airlines. Northwest's new fee applies to tickets sold after Thursday for travel starting Aug. 28 in the U.S. or to Canada.
Northwest also announced a fee for issuing frequent-flier tickets beginning Sept. 15. It said it will charge $25 for domestic tickets, $50 for trans-Atlantic tickets and $100 for trans-Pacific tickets. Steenland called the service fee temporary.