Journal Article

Auctions as a vehicle to reduce airport delays and achieve value capture

Abstract: Congestion at airports imposes large costs on airlines and their passengers. A key reason for congestion is that an airline schedules its flights without regard to the costs imposed on other airlines and their passengers. As a result, during some time intervals, airlines schedule more flights to and from an airport than that airport can accommodate and flights are delayed. This paper explores how a specific market-based proposal by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which includes the use of auctions to determine the right to arrive or depart in a specific time interval at airports in the New York City area, might be used as part of a strategy to mitigate delays and congestion. By explaining the underlying economic theory and key arguments with minimal technical jargon, the paper allows those with little formal training in economics to understand the fundamental issues associated with the FAA's controversial proposal. Moreover, the basics of the proposed auction process, known as a combinatorial auction, and value capture are also explained.

Keywords: Airlines; Airports;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Part of Series: Review

Publication Date: 2009

Volume: 91

Issue: Nov