Flight Time and One Way Airfare, 1955

Flight Time and One Way Airfare 1955

Source: TWA Advertising, May 27, 1955 issue of Collier’s magazine.

By the 1950s domestic and international (particularly transatlantic) air services were becoming common. Trans World Airlines (TWA 1925-2001) was a major domestic and international air carrier. The above graph depicts a sample of its one-way fare structure based upon an advertised sample of domestic city pairs and international destinations serviced from New York. Although there were by 1955 a wide range of propeller aircrafts, the Martin 404 (range of 1,700 km) and the Lockheed Constellation (range of 8,000 km) were particularly used by TWA. The fare structure shows a clear linear growth based upon the duration of the flight, both for domestic and international routes. However, international flights were 2.5 times more expensive than domestic flights of comparable duration. The following years would see a substantial decline in airfares as more efficient airplanes were introduced (such as jet planes) and as networks were expanded.