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Lambert airfares up 25% in a year, study says

The study said cities with the biggest increase in airfares have smaller airports, servicing smaller metros.
Credit: UPI
The uniquely shaped series of buildings that makeup the St. Louis-Lambert International Airport on its 100th birthday in St. Louis on Thursday, June 18, 2020. The oldest municipal airport in the country, was created on June 18, 1920, by Major Albert Bond Lambert and bought by the City of St. Louis eight years later. In 1956, Minoru Yamasaki's iconic arched terminal opened, becoming the forerunner of many modern airline terminals. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

ST. LOUIS — Airfares at St. Louis Lambert International Airport are up 25% year-over-year, a new study says, more than in larger markets.

The study, from CheapAir.com, a California travel agency, says it compared 128 million airfares in markets across the U.S. It looked to uncover how much the cost of domestic flights increased from March-April 19, 2021, compared with the same period this year, fueled by inflation, staffing shortages and accelerated travel demand. It found the lowest domestic airfare is up 26%.

Leisure travel has picked up so much, the CheapAir study said, that experts coined a new term for post-pandemic enthusiasm: "revenge travel."

"Business travel hasn't rebounded quite as fast, but it too is on an upswing," CheapAir said. "With accelerated demand in a still capacity-strapped industry — fares are trending up, and show no sign of slowing."

The study said cities with the biggest increase in airfares have smaller airports, servicing smaller metros.

It said that might be because of the limited number of flights and airlines operating out of those facilities. "Smaller airports offered fewer flights and itineraries than other, bigger cities, but during the pandemic things really shut down," CheapAir said.

Dayton, Ohio, for example, saw fares rise 42%, or about $109 more for each ticket. Flint, Michigan, was next, up 38%, followed by Greensboro, North Carolina (38%); Des Moines, Iowa (36%); Spokane, Washington (35%); Akron, Ohio (34%); Cincinnati, Ohio (34%); Little Rock, Arkansas (34%); West Palm Beach, Florida (34%); and Grand Rapids, Michigan (33%).

Click here for the full story from the St. Louis Business Journal.

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