Outsmarted by the Airlines?

Oooops.  Time for a bit of frantic back-pedaling here.

My usual source of information on airfare movements (farecompare.com) has gone unusually quiet this weekend, so I missed an unfortunate development (thanks to sharp readers who quickly advised me!).

It seems that many airlines have increased their fares by an amount that is closely comparable to the saving we'd be getting by no longer having to pay taxes to Uncle Sam.  There might still be a small saving, but it is inconsequential now that the airlines have moved to keep most of the tax saving for themselves.

So, ignore my earlier email.  Sorry.  Rather than being a great opportunity, it is a bad opportunity, because there is a slight risk that, once the FAA comes fully alive again, it might try to get taxes on tickets issued during this period for travel in the future (when the FAA is fully functioning again).

Airlines that decided they'd keep all the tax saving for themselves include American, United, Continental, Delta, US Airways, Southwest, AirTran and JetBlue.

Airlines that decided to let you enjoy the savings (at least as of a short while ago) include Alaska, Frontier and Virgin America.

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