American boosts round-trip fares $10
DALLAS — American Airlines is raising US base fares $10 per round trip. If the increase sticks, it would be the seventh broad price increase this year by US airlines, which say they need more revenue to offset rising fuel prices.
American Airlines spokesman Tim Smith confirmed that his airline raised prices Wednesday night. Delta said it was studying the move but had not matched American yet.
American’s latest fare increase also extended to Hawaii and Canada, where round-trip tickets rose by up to $21.
Airlines are also boosting fees. In the past two weeks, JetBlue raised the charge for checking a second bag to $35 from $30, and American upped the cost of making a flight reservation by phone to $25 from $20.
The Consumer Travel Alliance said yesterday that passengers paid US airlines more than $9.2 billion in fees last year — an average of $36.80 per round trip — and many of the charges weren’t disclosed to passengers when they bought their tickets.
The frequent fare increases so far in 2011 are reminiscent of 2008, when airlines pushed through many price increases to keep up with skyrocketing fuel costs.