A new way to think about the cost of your airline ticket

Mike Boyd sounded a bit tired of complaints about the high cost of flying on The Daily Circuit today.

We called Boyd to talk about a new study from Carlson-Wagonlit travel that has MSP ranked as the 11th most expensive city in the country to fly out of and says that we would see higher-than-average hikes in the cost of those already high prices.

“This bit about Minneapolis as somehow a lot worse off than other airports just simply isn’t true,” Boyd said. “It’s not a cheap airport to fly out of but then again, compared to its peers in other hubs, it is not particularly more expensive either.”

When Phil Picardi countered that Detroit and Atlanta – both Delta hubs – ranked 43 and 45 on that list of most expensive cities to fly out of, Boyd said the Carlson Wagonlit’s numbers were “flat wrong.”

Here’s how he likes to think about airfare:

In Minneapolis the average fare per-mile was 19.4 cents. Detroit was less expensive at18.36 cents and Atlanta was a touch higher at 20 cents.

“In terms of what people paid to fly per mile,” said Boyd, “Minneapolis was not widely out of line.”

He also pointed out that you pay more than someplace like Denver, which has a lot of low-cost carriers, but that we have better access.

“Forty-nine percent of all passengers at Minneapolis-St. Paul aren’t in Minneapolis-St. Paul,” he said. “They’re just crossing the hall to get to another Delta flight. What those people do though is provide enough support so Minneapolis has far more air service to far more destinations than it would without that connecting hub.”

It is expensive, Boyd said. And will get more expensive. But our flights are much shorter than places like Dulles, where there are cheap flights.

Next time I am grimacing at the cost of a plane ticket, I’ll break it down per mile and see if it makes me feel any better.

–Stephanie Curtis, social media host