Travelers who vote want airline mergers, airport improvements and fees addressed


WASHINGTON, DC – A national coalition, Travelers’ Voice, in conjunction with Morning Consult polling, announced Wednesday the results of a comprehensive survey of air traveling registered voters.

Registered voters, who have traveled by air in the last 12 months, perceive that airline mergers have increased ticket prices, decreased options for travelers, and harmed the overall travel experience. The 4,290 respondents also want Congress to focus on improving airports and allowing travelers to access more carriers.

Key findings from registered voters who have traveled by air in the last 12 months include:

• Nearly half of all respondents think there should be more airline carriers offering flight options to airports that serve their region (46%); and 63 percent say Congress needs to allow travelers access to more airline carriers.

• Three in five think airline mergers in recent years have increased prices for airline passengers (59%).

• Nearly half think the mergers have reduced flight options (45%); while over two in five think these mergers have harmed the overall travel experience (42%).

• More than two in five expressed that Congress should make it a priority to expand and improve airports to increase competition (44%).

• Almost six in 10 say the federal government should review consolidation of airlines to see its effect on competition (56%).

• According to about seven in 10, Congress should focus on change fees (68%), flight status transparency (68%), baggage fees (66%), and the overall amount of competition within the airline industry (68%).

• More than six in ten highlighted the need for Congress to focus on specific aspects of air travel, such as seat size (61%).
“We all know the American electorate is frustrated. We all know that the American air traveler is frustrated. This is a first-of-its-kind, objective assessment of where traveling voters stand, as travel populism continues to rise,” said Trey Bohn, executive director of Travelers’ Voice.

“Airline mergers over the past decade have all but eliminated competition in the airline industry, where now just four carriers control over 85 percent of domestic routes. The sentiment across the country signals the need for Congressional action to improve the air travel experience, and their frustrations match the mood of the country seeking to change the status quo. This could be seen as a motivating political issue.”