13 Responses

  1. Helixcardinal
    Helixcardinal at |

    Funny how he just completely shut up after his job was brought up.

  2. Chris
    Chris at |

    Man, that guy is a tool.

  3. Golfingboy
    Golfingboy at |

    Posts like this shows me Surya does not know what he is talking about when differentiating between actual taxes and airline imposed surcharges:

    https://twitter.com/SuryaGablin/status/472429481106604032/photo/1

    He claims taxes account for 33% of the said airfare in the picture, however, there is one flaw in his math. He included the $269.20 International Surcharge [aka airline imposed surcharge] when calculating the % of the airfare going to the government. The correct calculation should be ~10%.

    If the airline can fool a Managing Director – Taxes in the Airlines for America organization, or someone who we can safely say a subject matter expert, then they can pretty much fool anyone.

    His credibility, IMO, is shot.

  4. Jon
    Jon at |

    Although I do like having the full price displayed from the “get-go”, I don’t think it is the federal government’s business to require that it be shown. As long as the airline in question shows the full (exact) price before the credit card is charged, the government should have no say in the matter.

    I would argue that the airlines suffer a lot of meddling by Congress that other industries do not, due in part to the fact that the members of congress use the airlines. We have the Passenger’s Bill of Rights for example.

    It amazes me that consumers and Congress are not “up in arms” about Resort Fees, Facilities Fees, Airport Fees, etc. that the hotels and automobile rental agencies use to make their prices appear lower (at least initially) than they really are. It is even more surprising that no one seems to worked up about the fact that hotels don’t even charge the obligatory resort fee at the time of purchase!

  5. Tom
    Tom at |

    Seth. You’re right on the money with this one. Airlines are out to separate consumers with as much money as possible. Airlines hate taxes because they want that money as they understand that demand for their product is not entirely inelastic. They don’t want the government to treat the consumer “like an ATM” because THEY want this role. AFA do this devil’s bidding. The only thing transparent about this proposed law is that it is a sham and bad for consumers .

  6. Ryan E
    Ryan E at |

    Thanks for fighting the good fight!

  7. Jake from MSP
    Jake from MSP at |

    Bravo sir! Love this post

  8. oldguy
    oldguy at |

    nice work Seth! Transparency in prices is always a good thing. It’s one thing for airlines to lobby for different advertised pricing structures (that oddly seem to be more focused in the seller, not the purchaser, by omitting taxes, gvt. fees, whatever) but to cloak it under the guise of “transparency” is taking it too far.

  9. jamesb2147
    jamesb2147 at |

    Disappointed in A4A. I would have hoped for a more reasonable discussion on the topic, particularly from someone with a vested interest.

    Bravo, Seth. Maybe one day you’ll get a politician’s ear and help kill this bill.

  10. Flo
    Flo at |

    Good job standing up for consumers!

    I have lived in the US, the UK and Hong Kong – the US and UK forces the full price to be shown for airfare (the UK goes even further and forces hotels to do the same).

    When I was in Hong Kong – they are allowed to advertise just the base fare and you never really know what you are paying – even on their versions of online travel sites. It was terribly inefficient – everybody knows the prices aren’t real anyways – and you just end up having to click through every option to see the full price since every airlines has different combinations of fees and taxes.

  11. DLD 60: Happy birthday to me! – Dots, Lines & Destinations

    […] Airlines for America, the lobbying organization run by the US-based carriers, actually managed to convince Congress to pass their so-called Transparency in Airfares Act. I think that title is bullshit and have not been shy about that view. Someone on Twitter tried to convince me otherwise, which I thought was an entertaining conversation until I found out he actually is an employee of the group. Now I think it is ridiculously funny. […]

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