Air-Fare Control

March 21, 1975

Report Outline
Airline Travel Costs in Flux
Growth of Air Passenger Industry
Proposed Ways to Avoid Fare Raises
Special Focus

Airline Travel Costs in Flux

Official and Consumer Reaction to Higher Fares

Like everything else, the cost of air travel has been going up and up. In the past year, scheduled domestic airline fares have risen more than 20 per cent and trans-Atlantic fares are up 35 per cent. A number of discount fares, including those for youth and families, have been abolished. Higher fares have led to reduced air travel, and the cost of operating half-empty planes has, in turn, led the airlines to propose further fare increases.

In recent months, this vicious circle of higher fares and passenger declines has encouraged many airlines to apply to the Civil Aeronautics Board (Cab) for a number of discount fares to attract more passengers. The Cab has the authority to approve or disapprove fare increases or reductions and route changes proposed by scheduled domestic airlines. And it exerts strong influence over commercial aviation around the world; the board holds veto power over routes and fares designated by the International Air Transport Association (Iata), a body of 110 international airlines.

The board has been subjected to strong criticism recently over the upward costs of both domestic and international air travel. It has been accused of an airline industry bias—that it agrees too readily to airline proposals that discourage competition and encourage fare increases. Criticism has come from liberals and conservatives, Ford administration officials, members of Congress, consumer groups and some airline spokesmen. The Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission (Ftc) have argued that fare reductions are needed to spur passenger travel, and the Transportation Department proposed in January that the board reduce fares by 10 per cent.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Air Transportation
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May 15, 2015  Airline Safety
Oct. 18, 2013  Domestic Drones
Mar. 07, 2008  Future of the Airlines
Jun. 21, 2002  Future of the Airline Industry
Sep. 24, 1999  Airline Industry Problems
Oct. 08, 1993  Airline Safety
Oct. 24, 1986  Airline Deregulation
Oct. 19, 1984  Safety in the Air
Nov. 26, 1982  Troubled Air Transport Industry
Jun. 25, 1976  Air Safety
Mar. 21, 1975  Air-Fare Control
Jan. 27, 1971  Future of the Airlines
Sep. 10, 1969  Jumbo Jets: New Travel Era
Feb. 22, 1967  Airport Modernization
Mar. 18, 1964  Supersonic Transport Race
Feb. 07, 1962  Troubles of the Airlines
May 11, 1960  Prevention of Air Accidents
Sep. 17, 1958  Safety in the Air
May 23, 1956  Jet Age Problems
May 20, 1953  Safer Flying
Feb. 26, 1947  Air Safety
Jun. 08, 1944  Domestic Air Transportation
Apr. 08, 1944  International Air Transport
Mar. 02, 1939  Transatlantic Air Commerce
Jul. 14, 1927  Commercial Aeronautics
Jun. 20, 1925  Development of Commercial Air Navigation
Air Transportation
Regulation and Deregulation