A number of U.S. airlines are hinting that there may be raised ticket prices because the cost of gas is rising. Jet fuel prices are up more than 62% from a year ago.
So, are ticket prices going to go up? Not necessarily. In fact, ticket prices are continuing a 5-year downward trend. Airline travelers have been paying an average of $257 for their airline tickets in recent months. That’s down 6.6% over last year.
So, why can’t the airlines hike those ticket prices? One reason is that many airlines have added extra capacity, and there are a lot of seats now flying empty.
And some airlines, like United, are adding even more seats and more flights as they fight to increase market shares.
Some airlines are hinting about adding a fuel surcharge. But that’s also doubtful because the last time that the airlines tried that, they were investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice for price fixing.
So for the moment it’s still a buyer’s market for travelers in spite of higher fuel prices.
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