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Airfare tax


Airline prices just took another hike but it's just the beginning.

Just last week Delta started the latest price surge by raising tickets $4 to $10 dollars.
    American Airlines jumped in next.
        They were followed by United Airline.
   
As Kristine Frazao explains, finding a cheap seat on an airline may become even more difficult in the coming months.

At Washington's Reagan airport there's a festive mood.

But travelers are not all so jolly after learning of the plan in the new federal budget to double a TSA security fee added to each passenger's airfare.
Jenna Gibson said, "Airline tickets are already so expensive."

 Jean Hundley tells us, "It hurts the people trying to buy the tickets and costs them extra money."

The increased fee translates to about five dollars on a round trip ticket and some travelers say they may not even notice.
Sheri Leo, a traveler from Boston, "In the scheme of things I think it's not the worst idea that Congress could have come up with." 

But Pete Sepp with the National Taxpayers Union says it's an idea Congress has far too often.
"The Federal Govt can call this a user fee but the people who have to fly and pay this new charge would call it a tax."

That new fee will kick in just as the merger of two of this Country's biggest airlines- American and US Airways, takes effect. 
This is on top of what has already become a hefty expense for most middle class families.

Jean Hundley said, "I flew a lot back in the 80's and we could fly a whole family for $600 and now the grandson is coming in from Hawaii and now it's $800 for him, just round trip."

Here's a look at a round trip ticket from Washington to California - 585 dollars but after the current fees are added - 651 dollars.

Sepp says Congress should consider changing its approach.
"To increase revenue in a federal budget deal you have to stop looking at taking mire money out of people's pockets and selling off some of the assets the Federal Government already has."

Keeping costs grounded is a challenge as a new budget kicks into gear.

One of the big consumer concerns about that American - US Air merger was competition.
With fewer airlines competing for your purchases now, the remaining companies can change prices with little fear that people will just stop flying.