Friday, April 8, 2011

US AirwaysAnybody who has ever traveled before knows that id you are planning on traveling by plane that you should check the price of tickets regularly. One day they could be just the price you want and the next they could jump by $100. While nobody likes the fluctuations in airline tickets there is one thing they hat worse. No it isn't airport security, that is a whole other post, no what people hate is when airlines impermanently increase the price of their tickets, and at least two major U.S. airlines are trying to do that now.

That's right, at least two major airlines in the United States are attempting to raise the price of round trip tickets once again by $10 on some domestic routes in order to counter the rising costs of fuel. US Airways initiated the fare increase late Thursday on most of their routes. US Airways was then later followed in suit by Delta Air Lines who raised prices mostly on routes where they competed with discount airlines. JetBlue and Virgin America have already matched the increase according to Jaime Baker, an airline analyst.

JetBlue, in addition to raising fares, also extended travel periods for the increased fares to include dates before and after the peak summer travel season. AirTran is another airline company who plans on raising fares on some of their routes. Their increase will not include those to and from Atlanta, where they compete with Delta. This marks the first time AirTran has attempted a major fare increase in several months, according to Baker.

Apparently airlines have tried widespread price increases a total of nine times this year, six of which stuck. The last three times failed in a matter of days because other airlines did not increase their fares too. One certain way to tell if this latest attempt will be successful is to see if Southwest Airlines joins in and raises their fares as well. Southwest carries more passengers than any other airline company in the United States and also regularly undercuts the fees of other major airlines.

Oil has now risen above $110 per barrel, which makes that a 21% increase in this year alone. Rick Seaney, a fare watcher, points out that the airlines successfully raised prices four times in April of 2008, a time when oil prices increased from $102 to $117. In this month alone oil has risen $4 per barrel.

Source: MSNBC - U.S. airlines attempt to raise fares for the 10th time
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