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Why airlines are bankrupt

Like many of you, Im often forced to fly to see family, take
vacation, or go on business trips. And each time Im struck by how
little I get on the flight and how much I end up paying for the
pleasure. So when I saw that American Airlines was filing for
bankruptcy, I was shocked. Turns out 20 airlines have filed for
bankruptcy in the last 10 years, and the future doesnt look any
brighter for the remaining ones.

We put together this graphic looking at the airline industry and its
struggles since deregulation in 1978. It may not be obvious to the
average US domestic air traveler, but prices are A LOT better now than
they were 30+ years ago. In 1974, a round-trip flight from New York to
L.A. would have cost almost $1500 (adjusted for inflation). Today,
that flight can cost under $300. Still, air service is worse in a lot
of ways, with smaller seats, less in-flight food, and more delays and

I hope you find this graphic as eye opening as I did. While it wont
make paying baggage fees any easier, it should help you understand
exactly why airlines have decided to price gouge us ­ and what might
happen if they didnt.

And this code is the graphic with a link back to our site: