That’s the takeaway from the latest year-on-year study by consumer travel website CheapAir.com, which has analyzed data from 128 million fares for 74 cities across the United States.
Smaller Cities Seeing the Biggest Increases
The findings revealed increases in flight prices from all cities and, on average, the lowest domestic fare has increased by 17% in comparison to the same time in 2022. The website’s analysis also found that airfare has increased anywhere between 10% up to a whopping 35%, with smaller U.S. cities bearing the brunt of these much larger increases.
In fact, the website explained that, “All of the top 5 airfare increases were in smaller cities, as were 7 of the top 10,” with Flint, Michigan taking the top spot for the city that has seen the largest fare spike – a sharp rise of 35% – in 2023. The small Ohio cities of Akron and Dayton took the second and third spots, with year-on-year increases of 32% and 30%, respectively. A list of the ten cities with the largest increases in airfare for 2023 can be found here.
Commenting on this notable phenomenon of larger price hikes in smaller markets, the website explained, “Smaller airports offer fewer flights on fewer airlines than other, bigger cities, and airlines are struggling to meet demand across the board. In some cases, smaller markets have seen their flight schedules contract, and not return to pre-pandemic levels. When the number of flights is severely limited, fares can rise as a consequence of simple supply and demand.”
On the flipside, CheapAir.com’s analysis also revealed that San Francisco, Albany, and Boston all experienced a relatively small year-on-year fare hike of just 12% in 2023, with New York/Newark, Syracuse, Hartford, Rochester and Houston following suit with a 11% rise. Oakland and Manchester-Boston Regional both saw modest year-on-year increases of 10% percent. The full results of the survey are available to view here.
With many travelers at the mercy of the market when it comes to booking their tickets, the website stresses the importance of booking early and even considering using alternative airports to ensure better value for money.
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Feature image courtesy: MOHD AZRIN on Unsplash
Source: frugal travel guy