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Holidays hike up airfares




Travelers make their way to flights in the concourse of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on one of the nation's busiest travel days of the year November 23, 2011 in Arlington, Virginia.
Travelers make their way to flights in the concourse of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on one of the nation's busiest travel days of the year November 23, 2011 in Arlington, Virginia.
Win McNamee/Getty Images

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As the holidays and travel season arrive, airlines have decided to raise airfare. While many industry analysts expected the increases as commensurate with higher flight frequency during the period extending into the new year, others are looking at the rate hikes in the context of record airline profits.

The airlines posit that they are spending profits on extended service, new planes, and profits for shareholders. But for frequent fliers who note that they are getting smaller seats,  questions abound about why prices continue to increase. After the recent merger of US Airways and American Airlines, competition (and, thus, competitive pricing) is down as 80% of the country's airfare is controlled by four airlines. What do you think of rising airfare?

Guests:

Charlie Leocha, Head of Travelers United (formerly Consumer Travel Alliance)

Rick Seaney, Co-Founder and CEO of farecompare.com