How Does The Economy Affect The Airline Industry

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After the first successful flight of an aircraft in 1903, passenger air travel evolved into one of the most innovative and convenient forms of transportation to date. In the early twentieth century, the commencement of passenger airlines swept the nation, attracting thousands of customers and companies to the newly formed industry. Over time, more airlines joined the unique and thriving business, building one of the most iconic industries in the world. Nearing the twenty-first century, the industry displayed signs of deterioration, with carriers constantly entering and leaving the market. Nonetheless, the purpose of this paper is to analyze the fluctuating variable costs and slowing economy that have severely impacted the airline industry, …show more content…

Rapidly increasing oil costs along with a diminishing passenger demand forced the company into bankruptcy. Similar scenarios occurred in the cessation of Eastern Airlines and Trans World Airlines, where the companies operated for nearly fifty years before terminating operations. Prior to shutdown, Pan American World Airlines along with several other carriers suffered financially by the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978. The newly implemented federal law removed the majority of government control over fares, routes, and market entry, which sprawled an era of low-cost …show more content…

However, increasing global demand, supply, inflation, and taxes for oil spiked the price per gallon of jet fuel to nearly double the cost during the turn of the century. From 1990 to 2008, the price per gallon of jet fuel skyrocketed from $0.55 to $3.85, increasing by nearly 600%. While many carriers failed to overcome such change, financially stable airlines were forced to boost fares, limit services, and implement additional fees for travelers. At the pinnacle of fuel costs in 2008, American Airlines was the first major carrier in the United States to execute a checked baggage fee, with other carriers quick to follow. Correspondingly, high fuel costs obliterated approximately half of domestic carriers across the United

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