Allegiant Air proposes gambling on airfare prices

Allegiant Airlines
Allegiant Airlines

It seems that gambling has now reached far beyond the casinos of Las Vegas, horse rases and scratch tickets, Allegiant Air– a Nevada-based airline has expressed interest in launching something called, “variable tickets,” which are essentially airfare tickets costs that rise and fall according to jet fuel prices.

The discounted tickets would sell alongside traditional fixed-cost options. Those feeling lucky would receive cash back if fuel prices fall by takeoff — or, if prices soar, they’d pay up to a pre-disclosed cap.

Allegian Air seems quite serious about this proposal, considering they recently wrote a letter to the U.S. Department of Transportation suggesting the alternative to a new consumer protection rule that prohibits raising ticket costs after purchase.

It’s difficult to set yourself apart, as an airline in today’s economy, however, with competing airlines such as Delta, offering to no longer expire frequent flyer miles, and SouthWest still offering free baggage allowance on their flights, Allegian Air has to compete, and this is one innovative proposal. Airlines are all facing risks in terms of fuel costs these days, and this proposal is a chance for Allegian Air to pass some of the risk of that high cost to its customers.

The only downside to this proposal, would be the uncertainty that’s involved. It’s likely that the uncertainty of prices on airfare would be unsettling to customers, being that booking a plane ticket isn’t as recreational as playing roulette. Many customers wouldn’t want to incorporate this type of insecurity in their ticket, although for some, it may just be an eccentric way to start their Las Vegas trip, with a bit of a ‘gambling’ theme. However, the airline would still be offering the traditional fixed fair as well.

If you’re willing to wager on airfare prices, in coordinance with the fluctuating costs of aviation fuel, then this may be just the deal for you.

Cited Source: CNN News

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