Airline tickets: Flight costs are just the beginning

It used to be that buying a plane ticket was a fairly easy task. If you choose your flight and time and want to fly from Point A to Point B, buying tickets today is a more complicated process. Flyers are faced with a variety of choices, each of which has its own price tag.

There are so many fees associated with the cost of a plane ticket that the base cost is usually just a starting point. According to Max Leavitt, co-founder of, "Customers don't know what to expect if they don't read all the fine print, which is a lot these days." Your cable company is offering you the bundling of services, the airlines are doing the opposite, giving you a la carte choice of services to include regular fares. Carriers claim that add-on airline ticket fees are simply their idea of ​​giving flyers more choice. "We used to serve you a pizza with all the toppings, and that's all you got. Unbranding allows passengers to pay for just what they want," said United Airlines CEO Jeff Smisak, who compared the process to ordering a pizza.

But what if the current base price of a plane ticket is higher than the traditional discounted price "with all toppings"? Due to high fuel prices, an airline industry spokeswoman says extra revenue is needed to stay on the air. Parks that were included in the plane ticket prices but now bear the add-on fee include baggage checking (heavier bags, higher prices), cancellations and food and drinks. Some of the other fees associated with the cost of a plane ticket are for new services such as wireless Internet access and seating with additional legroom. There is even a new program whereby a passenger can buy a high-cost airline ticket that entitles him or her to 1.5 seats. If I'm curious, I can suggest that the size of the seats on the planes has been shrinking for the past few years so that people are motivated to buy second seats. (Do some.) Selling a double seat means passengers and luggage are less weight on the plane, so that the ticket's income is the same, while of course, it's possible that I'm bigger now and the seats just seem smaller …

In a July 21 study by Consumer Reports, American Spirit Airlines identified the most disgusting carrier. About 39% of Spirits' 2012 earnings came from sources other than airline tickets. George Hobica, founder and editor of AirfareWatchDog, which monitors airline deals, says "Spirit is the only non-frills airline, which can be 90 percent lower than other carriers fares" problem, in addition to airline ticket prices. It also charges a variety of fees: $ 10 to $ 19 to book just one flight, $ 3 for juice, a soft drink or candy and can. 35 from $ 100 per person-on bag. Ironically, Spirit Airlines is thriving when there are no other big carriers. This is definitely very popular for travelers traveling without luggage. It is clear that, even if no one likes the associated fees, airlines have to weigh charges against the largest number of offers from airlines like Southwest and Virgin America to determine the best deal for a plane ticket.

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