2013 travel outlook predicts gas price drop

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The travel outlook for 2013 brings both good news and bad news.

And the bad news is all about fees. Fees, fees, fees.

Though travel typically comes with a list of uncertainties - such as flight delays and traffic - the one thing you can count on is paying more to get where you're going this year.

And there are several ways you can expect to shell out more dough:

Increase in airfares

If you're looking for a deal on airfare you may be out of luck. USA Today predicts the only way airline price will go is up.

More airline fees

In 2012, airlines collected $924 million in baggage fees in the third quarter of last year. They made another $652 million from fees to change reservations.

And since less travelers are protesting what is now considered a necessary evil, the fees keep adding up. Hotels, rental car agencies and even cruises are now charging for services that really don't cost much more to provide.

Airline consolidation

With the merging of airlines, the option of flights and competitive prices become slim.

Delta and Northwest, United and Continental, Southwest and AirTran have all merged but we can expect at least one more marriage in the skies in 2013.

The price of gasoline

Even though all of these areas are looking to increase, the price of gasoline is expected to drop, which may push more travelers to the highway.

The average price for a gallon of gasoline nationally came in close to $3.63 a gallon last year. The US Energy Information Administration projects prices should average $3.43 per gallon this year.

Expect the highest prices when refineries switch from winter to summer blends in March and April.

Do you think the number of travelers will decrease this year with increasing airline, cruise and hotel fees? Or will more travelers take to the highway? Let us know how you prefer to travel on the WMBF News Facebook fan page.

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