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 a comparable duration. The following years would see a substantial decline in air fares as more efficient airplanes were introduced (such as jetplanes) and as networks were expanded.