It seems inevitable. The airlines are planning another fare increase. United Airlines, for example, will be increasing domestic tickets. The price hike may be as much as twenty dollars. Again, the increase is being justified by the price of fuel:
“…Executives acknowledge that despite the economic downturn, fares will rise, discounts currently available will be scarce, and routes and frequencies of flights will be reduced as domestic capacity is cut through the end of the year.
The changes starting in September come on top of a litany of new charges – for luggage, drinks, pillows and other amenities – announced by some airlines earlier this year.”
The data indicate that, for just this year, some fares have increased thirty seven per cent – for just this calendar year. On top of that, there are the additional charges that the airlines have imposed. Air Canada is removing life vests from some of its flights.
The airlines are involved in a gamble. The industry is counting on the public to maintain the traffic volume and absorb the rising costs. However, for many people, air travel will be simply cost prohibitive and people will re-examine whether that trip is essential. And when businesses do a similar assessment, the airlines will have very few options left.