More Free Market Airline Style

I’ve mentioned in the past that the airlines are employing some unique methods in order to raise additional revenues while protecting passengers who may not wanna take part in higher fares.

One of those examples is paying extra for prime seats.  For example, I’ve pointed out that some airlines are experimenting with charging folks extra for aisle and window seats.

Personally, this makes great sense to me.  I absolutely LOVE not sitting in the middle seat and am willing to pay money not too.  Others, however, are not willing to pay additional fees in order to travel and are thus more than happy to trade a middle seat for money.

We all win.

Well, here’s another example:

…according to a survey by, a fare-tracking site that found 16% of respondents were willing to pay to be at the front of the line when their flight lands. Of that group, 10% would pay $10 and 3% would pay as much as $20.

I’m traveling again this week and the example below really happened to me:

An early exit can also give fliers more time to make their connections. Airlines have gotten better at getting passengers to their destinations on time. In the first four months of this year, major U.S. carriers had an on-time arrival rate of 84.54%, their best performance for that period in 18 years, according to the Transportation Department’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

But even if their flight’s not delayed, passengers often have little cushion to make a connecting flight. Paying a few more dollars to be first off the plane could be an advantage, Hobica says.

I had one hour to get from my flight to my connection.  It appeared we were gonna be late and I’d rather have the extra time by being in front of the plane rather than in the back.  In this case, I didn’t have to pay extra [I would have], but I DID have to trade an aisle seat for a middle seat.  But I saved 17 rows.  And at 6 people per row, that’s a  lot of time.

Personally, I’m all for these free market measures that airlines use to spread the cost of flying to those who want the extras.

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