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CNN Today

FAA Report Shows More Demand, Lower Prices for Airline Tickets Over Next 12 Years

Aired March 7, 2000 - 2:23 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

DONNA KELLEY, CNN ANCHOR: Mile for mile, your airline tickets will be cheaper over the next few years, and you'll be among a crowd of other travelers.

CNN travel reporter Kalin Thomas-Samuel has more on the FAA's predictions for the near future of air travel.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KALIN THOMAS-SAMUEL, CNN TRAVEL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): According to the laws of supply and demand, air fares should be going up, but a Federal Aviation Administration report released Tuesday says more Americans will be flying during the next 12 years, and they'll be paying less for their plane tickets. According to the report, by 2011 there will be 880 million passenger trips.

JOHN RODGERS, FAA: We've got incomes going up, you've got prices perhaps dropping a little bit, and all of this should cause an increase in demand.

THOMAS-SAMUEL: During the same time period, the report says air fares should fall 1.3 percent per year. But with air congestion already a concern, rising fuel prices, airport delays and environmental regulations threaten continued growth. Fuel costs in December 1999 were 43-percent higher than in December 1998.

BARRY VALENTINE, GENERAL AVIATION MFRS. ASSN.: There are new technologies to make aircraft engines more fuel efficient so they burn less fuel. That makes them more environmental-friendly as well.

THOMAS-SAMUEL: And forecasters say quieter, more fuel-efficient jets won't hurt industry profits.

(on camera): One step airlines could take to help ease congestion is more direct flights instead of flying through hub cities. And in the coming weeks, the FAA is expected to announce an initiative regarding airport delays.

Kalin Thomas-Samuel, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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