Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) reported that the consolidated dollar value of airline tickets sold by U.S.-based travel agencies increased 7.79 percent year-over-year in the first five months of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010, and 31 percent over the same period in 2009. January through May 2011 ticket sales totalled $36.7 billion, compared to $34 billion in 2010, and $28 billion in2009, ARC said.
Year-to-date passenger traffic for the first five months of 2011 fell 2.2 percent – at 149.4 million flyers, compared to 152.8 million in 2010 – while reflecting a 5 percent increase over the same period in 2009. Ticket transactions for January through May 2011 were down slightly, at -1.66 percent compared to the same period in 2010, while up 7 percent over the same period in 2009.
Of the cities with the highest salary and wage earners based on IRS returns ARC said that passengers from the following locations purchased the most first class, round-trip airline tickets from January through May 2011: (Ranked 1 to 5) Beverly Hills, CA, Greenwich, CT, Atherton, CA, Palm Beach, FL and Haverford, PA.