You think being an airline passenger is expensive? Check out these crazy stats re: #airline earnings via @skift

  • “Carriers will earn a combined $19.7 billion in net income in 2014, up from a September projection of $16.4 billion, with passenger numbers topping 3 billion for the first time this year…”
  • “North American carriers will be the most profitable and make the biggest contribution to global earnings, generating $5.8 billion this year and $8.3 billion in 2014, IATA said.”
  • “European airlines will post net income of $1.7 billion in 2013 and $3.2 billion next year, while Asia-Pacific operators should lift earnings to $3.2 billion this year and $4.1 billion — the smallest regional gain — in 2014…”

Sounds pretty good, right? But wait, listen to THIS…

“…global earnings next year will amount to only 2.6 percent of revenue — equal to $5.94 per passenger — a margin that would be wiped out altogether without “product innovations” that are delivering $13 per head in ancillary revenues…”

Now those fees and surcharges are starting to make more sense. Think about it this way – would you start a business if you knew that you would only earn 2.6% profit every year? I definitely would not.