Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Air Travelers Should Pay for Air Travel: TSA Fee Increase is Justified

Part of the budget deal is to increase government revenues by about doubling the Passenger Security Fee that was established in 2001 to defray the cost of screening air passengers and to support the federal government's air transport security program. Screening requirements have increased, operational costs have risen and the total TSA aviation security appropriation has grown by 75 percent since the fee was instituted.  According to the GAO, in 2011 aviation fee collections covered only 28 percent of the TSA's aviation security costs.

GAO analysis of TSA air security appropriations and air security fees.
Here is the way it will work,
The proposed deal, expected to pass in the next several days, would more than double the $5 security fee on most round-trip tickets, to $11.20 per ticket. The higher fee begins on July 1. 
The old fee was $2.50 each way for a nonstop flight, capped at $5 each way if a traveler has a connection. The new fee would be $5.60 each way whether or not there's a connection. 
The CEO of Delta Air Lines said travelers will be the ones who pay it. 
"Airfares are going up for consumers. So that tax increase will not be absorbed by Delta," Richard Anderson said at a Delta Air Lines Inc. presentation for investors in New York on Wednesday.
So be it. We look in vain for other fee increases or spending cuts to align program revenues and costs. Going through the federal budget program by program, activity by activity and line by line, there would be a $100 to $200 billion per year in deficit reduction -- easy.


  1. More please. Much more.

  2. Should not the United States Postal Service run on a break even basis

  3. Yes, see ...
    Closing the postal gap would reduce deficits by about $10 billion a year. Off the top of my head, Amtrak is about $2 to $3 billion, flood insurance $5 billion, crop insurance $5 to $10 billion, there's another $5 to $10 billion in TSA and FAA operations, at least.