How does airplane ticket discounting work?

To a certain degree, airlines manage the ticket prices in the same way as they did 20 or even 30 years ago.

This is quite shocking to a lot of people, considering the proliferation of cheap airline ticket websites on the internet.

However, if you strip away the different branding, website presentations and content formats, they all actually pull from a limited set of databases, and when you get to the heart of these databases, you are treated to very startling conclusion. It seems that when it comes to fundamentals, airline ticket economics pretty much work today the same way they did 20 or even 30 years ago.

As shocking as that is, it shouldn’t be a surprise because the fundamental economic reality of airline seat prices and tickets remain the same. An airline has certain fixed costs to airplanes in the air, land them and to fill them with passengers. Those costs remain the same except for fuel costs and inflation-adjusted costs.

Using those base numbers and applying it to the fact that when an airline takes off with vacant seats, that airline is theoretically losing money. It has to fill those seats somehow, some way. Regardless of what it does, it has to fill those seats; otherwise, those opportunity costs can translate into real-world costs that hurt the airline right here right now.

By hurting I’m not necessarily talking about the airline being in the red. It doesn’t necessarily have to incur loss instead of generating a profit. Instead, the amount of potential profit it could have earned decreases with each and every vacancy. This is the hard economic reality that you have to filter airline ticket pricing against.

The key is to work around this problem. This is what separates successful plane companies from the ones that are struggling. There is no middle ground increasingly.

With this background, it is no surprise that there is a tremendous amount of tickets out there available even at peak season, in the best seats, in the best airlines, or in the best destinations. This is this reality is never going to go away because this was used to be the domain of ticket consolidators.

Back in the bad old days, you have to have access to ticket consolidators so you can get this real, solid discount to premium destinations. You have to be connected or pay extra to get that access. Whatever the case may be, you need to do something to get access to that.

You don’t have to do that nowadays because you just need to go to our website, and we will lock you in to plain English printouts of the best ticket prices, so you can make an informed decision. You just have to compare them. You still have to make sure that they make economic sense in your particular set of circumstances, but you definitely are spared from having to jump through many hoops, or work your connections just so you can get tickets that are cheap enough to be worth buying.