How the FAA partial shutdown will affect your airline tickets
Mon, 25 Jul 2011 22:53:44 GMT —
The Federal Aviation Administration ran into a bit of a crisis Monday.
A crisis which led to thousands of employees being told to stay home. And the crisis could affect your wallet.
Karen Stiller flew out of Albany to New Orleans recently, but she knew how to get a good deal.
"I got my ticket in advance, I knew I was gonna fly so I booked my tickets a couple months in advance. It was just a one way trip and it was a little over $200," said Stiller.
But that could change. Friday night, congress was unable to re-authorize funding for the Federal Aviation Administration, resulting in 4,000 employees being told they would take Monday as a furlough day. However, Director Yvette Aehle of Southwest Georgia Regional Airport, says this in no way impacts the safety of those flying Monday.
"Air traffic controllers, they're obviously here, our TSA folks are working, so all safety involved people are still on the clock," said Aehle.
And during this time, those purchasing airline tickets will not have to pay federal taxes. However, many airlines are looking to recover that lost revenue and are bumping up the price of tickets.
"I think they've taken advantage of us as it is, by having us, being charged extra fees for our carry-on baggage and now they're trying to get more fees by having us pay more for the FAA costs.
The FAA partial shutdown is also having effects locally, delaying $15.8 million in terminal improvement projects. Although Director Yvette Aehle says they're still opening up bids this Thursday.
"On a good part, though, is that we do have 120 days to award the bid once we do open them on Thursday so we're gonna go ahead," said Aehle.
Aehle has written to Senator Saxby Chambliss about the issue, saying they need to know by August 12th whether they'll get to use the money allocated to them this year.
Aehle said it's a wait-and-see issue that could be resolved any day.