Wichita’s average fare for the third quarter was $410.41, a slight increase of 1.2% from third quarter 2013 but a 29% decrease from its third quarter 2000 fare, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS).
Wichita’s average 3rd quarter fare ranked 43rd out of 100 airports in 2014; Wichita’s fare ranked 20th out of 100 in year 2000. Airport officials said Wichita’s lower fares are attributed to discount-fare service, which entered the market in 2002 with AirTran, followed by Allegiant, Frontier, and now Southwest Airlines. Southwest is vital to keeping fares competitive, officials said.
“The impact of low-cost carriers in our market is clearly seen by the 29% decrease in fares since 2000, particularly when compared to regional airports,” Valerie Wise, the Eisenhower Air Service & Business Development Manager, said.
Comparing to regional airports, Wichita’s third-quarter average fare was less than Oklahoma City’s ($429.29) and Tulsa ($440.53); Kansas City’s fare was $376.08, and the U.S. average fare was $396.37.