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Airline Fliers Miffed Over ‘Peak Travel Surcharge’

Thursday October 8, 2009 7:48 AM - One Comment

jetblueAt the major airports around the New York City area, airline passengers are reacting to a “new fly charge” over the major holidays that many are calling sneaky. Sisters Robin and Cori Ng of the Bellrose section of Queens were not happy travelers on Wednesday. They learned of the airlines’ plans to squeeze a bit more cash out of them when they next fly to their family reunion in Texas, over the holidays.”It’s pretty deceiving that they would do this to us without informing us potential clients,” Robin Ng said.

“It’s horrible. Why would they charge an extra $10 around the holiday without even informing the people traveling,” Cori Ng wondered.

With no formal announcement American, Continental, US Airways, Delta and United imposed an extra $10 fee for most flights during the busiest travel days of the year.

It began with three days — the Sunday after Thanksgiving, Jan. 2 and Jan. 3.

But last night, CBS 2 HD learned that 10 new days have been added. According to farecompare.com, they are: The Monday after Thanksgiving; Dec. 19, 26 and 27; spring break days of March 14, 20, 21 and 28; April 11 and May 28.

The airlines said they are barred by antitrust laws from discussing fare decisions in public.

“We experience this all the time with all the pork stuffed in on every bill they send through Congress,” airline traveler Owen Puckett said. “They sneak stuff in all the time that the public does not know about.”

Added Belinda Puckett, “Plus they already charge you for luggage fees.”

The Pucketts are from New Mexico and are loyal New York tourists. But with the cost of tickets, taxes, transportation to and from airports, and baggage charges they said they’ve had it.

“Well, the up the price during the holidays anyway because it costs me $800 plus something to get my son home for Christmas last year from New York City. We paid $258 roundtrip right now,” Belinda Puckett said.

And now this so called “peak travel surcharge” is an outrage, they said, for a family traveling on a strict budget.

“It’s already expensive to fly. Why sneak another $10 in,” Kelcey Puckett said.

Many airlines compete to keep prices down, but they also seem to match competitors’ price hikes, and travelers at LaGuardia Airport call that gouging.

Gaetano Lisco, who moved to New York from Italy, responded sarcastically about the secretive fee.

“I will hope that the $10 will improve the service and that everybody will be happy,” he said.

Low-cost airlines, including Southwest, Air Tran, and Jet Blue, so far have not imposed peak travel fees.

{CBS 2 HD /Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter}

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One Response to “Airline Fliers Miffed Over ‘Peak Travel Surcharge’”

1. Comment from Pinny
Time October 14, 2009 at 6:36 PM

“The airlines said they are barred by antitrust laws from discussing fare decisions in public.”

How is it that airlines seem to be able to make such changes in tandem without violating antitrust laws? Why isn’t anyone crying “COLLUSION!”

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