Airfares Rise for 4th Year in a Row
Average price now at $363.42
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Jan 17, 2014 8:43 AM CST
In this Wednesday, July 13, 2011, file photo, ticket agent Dee Manzon helps a customer at United Airlines premier access check-in counter at San Francisco International Airport.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

(Newser) – If flying seems like an increasingly expensive option, you're not imagining things. Airfares rose for the fourth straight year in 2013, bringing the average domestic ticket, with tax, up to $363.42, according to an AP analysis of travel data. That's up 2% on the year and 12% above the recession-fueled 2009 low. What's more, flights are getting more crowded as airlines kill off unprofitable routes and merge flights.

"Anyone traveling today will know that those flights are full," says an executive for a company that handles ticket transactions for sites like Orbitz. "Just through supply and demand, those fares will go up." Rick Seaney at USA Today expects the trend to be even more pronounced this year, with fares rising 4% to 5.5% before all is said and done. He advises buying tickets three-and-a-half months in advance for domestic flights, and definitely no later than 21 days before departure.

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Ezekiel 25:17
Jan 18, 2014 4:17 PM CST
Isn't that nice. I rented yet another car this weekend for a business trip on Friday. Got it so cheap that I am keeping it into Monday. Got to put more points on Hertz Platinum to boot. Being a rental, I drove that rice burner pretty much at 80 to 85 the whole time. Got to my destination so early, I had to blow some time before the industry forum. It was so nice that an airline trip was not included. Looking for a very nice 2014 with minimal airline travel. Good luck airlines with your cattle car approach to travel.
Jan 17, 2014 1:24 PM CST
TSA fees per ticket are going up with just passed "deficit reducing" budget bill. More overweight government bureaucracy smoke 'n mirrors.
Jan 17, 2014 10:53 AM CST
sure-i understand the need-have to keep up with rising wages.