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Pittsburgh airport’s fees charged to airlines drop for sixth straight year

Natasha Lindstrom
357422Pittsburghairportticketing
Tribune-Review

The fees that Pittsburgh International Airport charges to airlines will drop by 8.4 percent in 2019 to $10.35 per departing passenger in 2019 — the sixth straight year the rate has fallen, officials said.

The Allegheny County Airport Authority on Friday approved the rates as part of the airport’s 2019 budget.

The plan includes $112.3 million in operating revenue, a 3 percent increase from this year, and sets aside $129.6 million for capital projects.

The bulk of capital money — $75 million — will go toward the first phase of planning and designs for the airport’s planned $1.1 billion terminal expansion , set for completion in 2023. The funding also may be used for relocating airlines or jetways, the budget says.

“We’re moving forward with our terminal modernization project,” airline spokesman Bob Kerlik said, “and we’re able to do it in a way that’s cost-effective for the carriers.”

Airlines tend to look favorably on lower as well as relatively stable rates charged to airlines — known as the cost per enplanement, or CPE — which means the trend could entice more airlines to introduce or expand service there.

The airport’s CPE next year is set at $10.35, down from $11.30 in 2018 and the all-time high of $14.97 in 2011.

Kerlik attributed the lower rates to a combination of increased revenues, cost controls and more passengers.

About 7.2 million passengers have traveled through the airport since Jan. 1 through the end of September, up by 8.4 percent from the same time last year, Kerlik said. Domestic travelers increased by about 525,000 (up 8.2 percent from 2018) through September and international passengers increased by about 33,000 (up 15.3 percent).

Natasha Lindstrom is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Natasha at 412-380-8514, [email protected] or via Twitter @NewsNatasha.

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