Airfares Going Up

It was not our collective imagination. Domestic airfares are indeed going up.

Figures released by the government indicate fares for the first three months of the year are up nearly 5 percent from last year, The Associated Press is reporting.

Granted, the numbers are only for the beginning of the year, but they do not even include baggage fees and other extras.

According to AP, the Department of Transportation says in a report the average fares are still 25 percent lower than they were in 1999, after adjustments for inflation.

But that may come as little consolation for those seeking a bargain in 2010.

The average domestic fare in the first quarter rose to $328 (including taxes and security fees).

AP says the highest average fare for the first quarter was in Huntsville, Alabama, and the lowest in Atlantic City, N.J.

The biggest price hike between early 2009 and early 2010 occurred in Charleston, S.C., where low-cost carrier AirTran pulled out last December. On the other hand, fares went down in Milwaukee, where Southwest began service.

Information from other sources indicates fares have also been on the rise this summer.

According to the Air Transport Association, a trade group of the largest U.S. carriers, in June passengers were paying about 18 percent more than they did in June of last year.

Photo,geekr, flickr

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