U.S. airlines head overseas for higher yields

Major U.S. airlines with global reach aren't letting up on their strategy to shift more of their service to international flights, where they have been better able to raise ticket prices and make money in markets with little or no low-cost competition.

The airlines have been at it for about two years, and in the first half of 2005, domestic capacity remained flat for the U.S. airline industry, Air Transport Association figures show. That's despite 11.9% growth at domestic-only Southwest and 24.1% at predominantly domestic JetBlue, both of which are included in the ATA numbers.

For all of last year, U.S. airlines increased their domestic capacity by 5.3% and their international capacity by 11.7%, the ATA reported.

That paid off, with a 15.5% increase in international traffic.


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