In the era of electronic ticketing, a vast majority of people buy their airline tickets online. However, did you know that you could save on the cost of your Breeze Airways ticket by booking it at the airport on Tuesdays between 11AM and 1PM ET? Let’s talk about why…
Why you should buy Breeze tickets at the airport
Breeze Airways is one of the newest airlines in the United States, and the airline is a unique ultra low cost carrier. Breeze Airways’ base fares tend to be quite low, though when you get to the booking page, you might notice an interesting quirk, in the form of a “Technology Development Charge.”
For example, take the below $39 flight from Tampa to Huntsville.
You’ll notice that the base fare is only $13.40, but then there are $25.60 in taxes & fees, including a $10 “Technology Development Charge.”
The amount isn’t the same with all itineraries. For example, take the below $107 flight from Tampa to Las Vegas.
For this flight, the “Technology Development Charge” is $27.
If you book your ticket through Breeze Airways’ website, you’re on the hook for paying that fee. However, there’s a way to avoid it — if you instead book at any Breeze Airways ticket counter on a Tuesday between 11AM and 1PM ET, you won’t have to pay the “Technology Development Charge.”
Breeze Airways justifies the “Technology Development Charge” by claiming “we’re a technology company that happens to fly airplanes,” and that “we’re using this portion of the fare to make a Seriously Nice airline.”
Why Breeze tickets are cheaper at the airport
Okay, you can save some amount of money by booking your Breeze Airways tickets on Tuesdays between 11AM and 1PM ET, but what’s the logic for this seemingly random policy? Well, it comes down to taxes.
Airlines have to pay a 7.5% federal excise tax on airfare, but not on optional fees. In order for something to be considered an optional fee, there has to be a way to avoid paying it. So Breeze doesn’t have to pay taxes on the “Technology Development Charge” portion of the ticket cost because it’s technically a fee, rather than airfare, since you can avoid it.
Of course Breeze doesn’t want to make it easy for people to book at the airport (it’s a much more costly ticketing technique), which is why there’s only a two hour period over the entire week where you can book tickets at the airport.
Virtually all ultra low cost carriers (including Allegiant Air, Frontier Airlines, and Spirit Airlines) have similar made up charges that make up a big portion of the airfare, in order to reduce the taxes they have to pay on ticket costs.
I tend to think that this is worth being aware of, though for most people it’s probably not worth making a special trip to the airport just to save this fee. Of course if you’re booking a bunch of tickets, or travel for lots of people, the savings may add up. If you happen to be at an airport on a Tuesday anyway, then this might be more valuable to a wider audience.
The cheapest place to book Breeze Airways tickets isn’t online, but rather at the airport on Tuesdays between 11AM and 1PM ET. That’s because the “Technology Development Charge” doesn’t apply when ticketing Breeze reservations at the airport.
The logic for this policy is that ultra low cost carriers try to minimize the taxes they have to pay by making as much of the fare as possible fees rather than base fare. That’s because airfare has a federal excise tax of 7.5%, while fees don’t.
A vast majority of people aren’t going to go through the hassle of booking at the airport, while those that do can come out ahead.
Could you see yourself ticketing a Breeze reservation at the airport?