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Airfares Are a Bargain

A change in the price of any good or service over time has little value in isolation. Therefore, it is common practice to adjust the values in a time series for inflation. The adjusted (restated) values are then presented in “real” (rather than “nominal”) terms. In the example below, however, rather than restating the various items in real (inflation-adjusted) terms, they are shown in their original values, facilitating comparisons with each other and with movements in the U.S. Consumer Price Index (CPI), a federal metric designed to capture the price of a representative basket of U.S. goods and services. *Congress enacted legislation deregulating domestic airline passenger service in October 1978.

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