Sun, Nov 22, 2009
Continental And American Tack On Additional Fees
Two major U.S. carriers are making it more expensive to travel
this holiday season, and others are expected to follow. Continental
and American Airlines have announce additional surcharges on peak
travel dates of as much as $30 per ticket.
Analysts say it's a simple matter of supply and demand.
"Basically, it's a way of the airlines making more money off of
travel days that they know are going to be in high demand," said
Graeme Wallace, chief technology officer of FareCompare.com, told
American Airlines led the charge in September, announcing it
would add surcharges to three dates over the holidays, but soon
started expanding the number of dates covered by the fees.
(Possibly because travelers were booking around those dates? ed.)
United, Delta, Northwest, and Continental have all boosted fares
for holiday travel.
United spokesperson Robin Urbanski told CNN the fare increases
make sense. "Costs are higher on peak travel days because we add
more staffing at the airport to ensure our almost 10 million
customers who are traveling during the holidays are
The surcharges, which Urbanski acknowledged are simply "a
limited fare increase" because the only apply to certain dates, do
not always show up as part of the base fare on online booking
sites. Travelers may be hit with the surcharge only after they've
been through the entire booking process.
And the holidays are not going to be the end of it. Some
airlines have already said they will tack on a $50 surcharge for
travel to and from the Super Bowl.
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