Airlines Use Tricks to Maximize Revenues for Thanksgiving Travel

US airlines (NYSE:FAA) have countered high jet fuel prices by cutting back on seat capacities. This means the average traveler is paying about 6% more this year for a round trip flight during the Thanksgiving holiday compared to last year.

The carriers, of course, are trying to make the most of this opportunity after the lull in post-summer travel. The Air Transport Association projects expensive tickets coupled with high unemployment could mean passengers flying Thanksgiving drop by 2%. Even so, airlines are likely to have a load factor of more than 85% on the Sunday and Monday following Thanksgiving.

Airlines are also trying to boost revenues by imposing surcharges such as premiums for picking seats, checking luggage, and booking through a travel agent. This could mean overcrowded flights and overhead lockers as passengers seek to work around the charges.

Some harried passengers are electing to drive. Although supposedly a longer travel experience, driving might be better to avoid airport delays, flight cancellations, baggage fees and, of course, packing in like sardines on overcrowded flights.

Here’s how airline stocks are trading on the news:

  • United Continental Holdings (NYSE:UAL): UAL shares recently traded at $16.16, down $0.43, or 2.59%. Its market capitalization is $5.35 billion. They have traded in a 52-week range of $15.92 to $29.25. Volume today was 1,087,213 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 5,757,700 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 9.28, while trailing earnings are $1.74 per share. About the company: United Continental Holdings Inc. is an airline holding company. The Company owns and operates airlines that transports persons, property and mail throughout the United Statesand abroad. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>
  • JetBlue Airways Corporation (NASDAQ:JBLU): JBLU shares recently traded at $3.59, down $0.11, or 2.97%. Its market capitalization is $1.07 billion. They have traded in a 52-week range of $3.57 to $7.60. Volume today was 939,564 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 5,639,130 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 15.02, while trailing earnings are $0.24 per share. About the company: JetBlue Airways Corporation provides nonstop passenger flight service through its Airbus A320 aircraft. The Company’s airline is based in New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport and currently flies to various destinations in the United States. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>
  • Delta Air Lines Inc. (NYSE:DAL): DAL shares recently traded at $7.09, down $0.27, or 3.67%. Its market capitalization is $6.01 billion. They have traded in a 52-week range of $6.41 to $14.38. Volume today was 1,962,843 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 12,588,900 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 13.38, while trailing earnings are $0.53 per share. About the company: Delta Air Lines, Inc. provides scheduled air transportation for passengers, freight, and mail over a network of routes throughout the United States and internationally. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>
  • Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE:LUV): LUV shares recently traded at $7.63, down $0.18, or 2.3%. Its market capitalization is $5.94 billion. They have traded in a 52-week range of $7.15 to $13.77. Volume today was 1,427,710 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 9,886,240 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 38.94, while trailing earnings are $0.20 per share. The company pays a dividend of $0.02 per share for a dividend yield of 0.20%. About the company: Southwest Airlines Co. is a domestic airline that provides primarily short-haul, high-frequency, point-to-point service. The Company offers flights throughout the United States. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>
  • US Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC): LCC shares recently traded at $4.20, down $0.22, or 4.98%. Its market capitalization is $680.47 million. They have traded in a 52-week range of $4.18 to $11.98. Volume today was 1,798,038 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 6,860,960 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 8.36, while trailing earnings are $0.50 per share. About the company: US Airways Group, Inc. is an air carrier that transports passengers, property, and mail. The Company provides regularly scheduled service at airports in the United States, Canada, Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>
  • AMR Corporation (NYSE:AMR): AMR shares recently traded at $1.72, down $0.08, or 4.44%. Its market capitalization is $576.59 million. They have traded in a 52-week range of $1.63 to $8.89. Volume today was 2,343,352 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 11,642,100 shares. The company’s trailing earnings are $-2.93 per share. About the company: AMR Corporation operates an airline that provides scheduled passenger, freight, and mail service throughout North America, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe, and the Pacific. The Company also provides connecting service throughout the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean. In addition, AMR provides aviation services, call center management services, and investment advisory services. Get the most recent company news and stock data here >>

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