How much you spend on air travel can have a lot to do with the airport you use. Thus every year the folks at Cheapflights.com conduct an analysis of 101 U.S. airports to seek out the lowest average ticket prices, based on its users’ findings in searching for flights.
In Cheapflights’ 2016 Airport Affordability Index, the airport with the lowest average fares during June to a list of common domestic and international destinations is Long Beach, California, (a JetBlue hub) which jumped to the number one spot from a number seven ranking in last year’s study, showing a 2016 average fare of $202.
In second place for affordable fares is Dallas/Ft. Worth ($203), up from 29th place last year. And in third is New York LaGuardia ($215), which was in fourth place in 2015.
Atlanta ranked #9. San Francisco SFO came in rather pricey at #43, and San Jose SJC is in the same boat at #45. Oakland fared better at #16 due to its prevalence of low fare carriers.
How does this matter to a traveler who has no choice in airports? Maybe it doesn’t; but some travelers have airport options, and that can make a difference. For instance, flying out of Long Beach with its average fare of $202 compares with flying out of Los Angeles International – just over 20 miles away – where the average fare this June was $293.
In the New York area, Cheapflights said, the average June fare from LaGuardia to Miami was $148, while it was $222 from JFK; to Seattle, the differential between LGA and JFK was $289 vs. $315. An airport’s average fares can change significantly from year to year, especially as low-cost airlines move in and out of markets.
On the bottom of the list, ranking 101st, was Honolulu, with an average fare of $641 – no surprise there. New York JFK ranked 95th on the list with an average fare of $454, while Sacramento, California dropped from 42nd place to 97th, with an average fare of $493.
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