What is the Real Cost of purchasing an airline ticket?
New US Federal Regulations may have a negative effect on sales as passengers are given their total prices with taxes and fees included. Currently when an airline runs a sale they advertize the base fare and tack on a little note to tell you “this does not include Federal and State taxes.” This is where the discrepancy between advertized price and purchased price begins.
Base fares do not take into account Federal or State taxes, Passenger Facility Charges, Fuel Surcharges, and a number of other charges added to the final price. These taxes can produce a significant difference in fare once calculated and in some cases it can almost double the fare.
The Real Cost of Traveling
One example of a large fee is the Fuel Surcharges, carriers like Southwest hedge their bets on fuel prices and were able to keep their costs low (no longer the situation) while other carriers were forced to increase ticket prices to include a higher fee. This is common practice for International carriers outside of the US like Lufthansa or KLM and it doesn’t make a difference if the flight is a codeshare or not. (A codeshare is when a carrier such as Delta offers flights on another carrier such as KLM.)
For a great article about how fuel surcharges affects ticket prices read this article from USA Today.
When the fuel crisis hit American Airlines (along with other carriers) was forced to raise a fuel surcharge from between $40 US to $120 US per segment – that’s each flight taken. If you have connecting flights; that is $120 X 4 for a round trip ticket. Though these increases occurred on international flights into the UK, it nonetheless caused some sticker shock at the final price.
Airline costs are going up and with the new EU rules on greenhouse gas emissions for airlines, the fees for travel can only continue to rise. The new Federal Regulations that airline tickets include all fees may have an adverse affect on the buy population, but if you have to travel and budget your expenses, knowing the costs up front is important.
For more information on the new regulations check out this eturbonews article.
For more information on the EU greenhouse fees check out this previous post here.