UPDATE 3. – 12-29-10: As of this morning (Dec. 29), the $20 roundtrip airfare hike initiated by American Airlines on Monday has now been matched by United, Continental, Delta, US Airways and Alaska Airlines. Carriers that have so far NOT joined in the airfare hike include AirTran, Frontier, JetBlue and Southwest.
UPDATE 2. – 12-28-10: This afternoon (Dec. 28), US Airways also matched the American-initated airfare hike of Dec. 27.
UPDATE 1. - 12-28-10: This morning (Dec. 28), both United Airlines and Continental Airlines matched Monday’s $20 roundtrip airfare hike initiated by American Airlines. We’ll continue to monitor the 1pm and 8pm feeds to see if US Airways matches. Southwest meanwhile, appears to be sitting this hike out – at least for now.
EARLIER: In the midst of one of the worst travel disruptions of the year that saw thousands of passengers stranded at airports along the Eastern seaboard due to blizzard conditions, airfare prices are on the rise.
New Surcharges: On Monday morning (Dec. 27), both United and Continental added a new $10 one-way “peak travel day” airline surcharge to the majority of their domestic routes ($20 roundtrip). These surcharges have been added to all future travel dates, and are incorporated into the price of the ticket.
Airfare Hike: At midday on Monday (Dec. 27), American Airlines initiated a $20 roundtrip airfare hike for the bulk of its domestic route system; this hike was soon matched by Delta Air Lines. This the second airfare hike launched by American this month.
It’s worth noting that these increases come on a day in which oil prices soared to a 26-month high, which impacts the airlines’ jet fuel costs.
Watch this space; we’ll update as warranted.