New Airline Ticket Fees Coming
The 9/11 security fee on airline tickets is going up on July 1. The increase was mandated by Congress in last year's budget compromise. Currently, the fee is $2.50 per segment, with a cap of $5 per one-way trip or $10 per round-trip. The new fee is $5.60 per one-way trip, but with no cap -- meaning that the fee would need to be paid on itineraries involving multiple stops, long connection time, or stopovers (a four-hour break in the whether voluntary or due to airline scheduling). Taking two flights to a destinations with a four-hour connection, for example, will trigger $11.20 in fees. A portion of the increased fee is being allocated to the general fund for deficit reduction. Fees collected prior to July 1 are used exclusively to defray the cost of security.
Our systems are outdated and we are behind many countries who are using GPS instead of radar which is supposed to be safer and allow planes to fly closer together. If they are going to raise fees, they should use that money to update our systems as to put it in the general fund.
The Federal Aviation Administration is in the midst of a multibillion-dollar upgrade of the nation's air traffic control system. The new system is called the Next Generation Air Transportation System, or NextGen. It will be highly automated. It will rely on GPS instead of radar to locate planes, and it is designed to allow air traffic controllers and pilots to pack more planes, helicopters and eventually drones into our skies.
GPS has been used for years for navigation on airplanes, it is not a new program at all. Using advanced systems in ATC has been under testing for at least four years now and is operational in places like PHL, IAH and a few other locations. The system is ADS-B and in terms of ATC use it will provide surveillance in areas that currently do not have RADAR coverage for any number of reasons. ADS-B to be used to the maximum requires equipment on the airplane as well as in the ATC facility....every airplane will be required to meet the equipage mandate by 2020 in order to operate within the airspace.
ADS-B and enhanced software also provides a one second update over the usual five second update terminal ATC facilities have operated with for years and years. Enroute controllers have a 12 second update which seems like forever to those of us that worked in terminal facilities. ADS-B is still in it's infancy yet will provide many benefits including the ability for the pilot to receive enhanced weather information, aircraft to aircraft data however; reduction of ATC separation standards will not be achieved until the FAA and industry move aggressively toward that goal.
NextGEN is a nice buzz word and will be very beneficial IF all will allow it to be used to the fullest. Automation both on the flight deck and inside the control room must be utilized in order to reach the maximum capability of the program.
Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.
Excellent thread californian.
Excellent reporting IAHFLYR. If only media outlets would report that infomation. I have seen very short pieces on NBC nightly news in the past but they only talk about the overall system and planes flying closer together and near misses. They don't talk about automation, faster information transmission, weather updates, none of it. Thank you for the info!
ks77, happy to be of help, well sometime!
Had I not been on the national test team I would have no clue about some of this so I consider myself very luck to have been a part of making a difference or should make a difference if they would pick up implementation.