Gas prices to blame for fast increase in summer airfares

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Airfares are expected to increase faster than normal this summer, as airlines said soaring fuel prices could cost them billions more than last year, Florida Today reports.
“You’ll see gradual increases and then a much bigger jump in April and May when people start shopping for the summer travel season,” said Rick Seaney, CEO of travel website
The latest data shows the average fare increased 9 percent between January 2011 and January 2012, while the price of jet fuel rose 18 percent over the same period. It also showed that Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) charged $140 each way during the fourth quarter, while JetBlue (NYSE: JBLU) charged $156 and United Continental (NYSE: UAL) charged $270.



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