The average domestic airfare, adjusted for inflation and minus extra fees, has dropped 21% since 1995, the Department of Transportation says, as the industry continues to suffer from a cost-intensive business structure and uncontrollable external factors. This has led to $55 billion in losses in the past decade and forced carriers to look to various ancillary charges to shore up revenue. Passenger tickets make up 71% of U.S. airlines' overall passenger revenue, dropping from 88% in 1990, the DOT reports.

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