Airlines are capping prices on flights out of Florida after people attempting to evacuate before Hurricane Irma hits spoke out against skyrocketing costs.
Fliers were charged up to $3,000 for domestic flights that typically cost just a fraction of that, the Miami Herald reported.
While airlines are not subject to Florida’s price-gouging laws, many people saw the inflated prices as unethical and dangerous as people were trying to evacuate the area.
— John Del Signore (@johndelsignore) September 6, 2017
When flight prices are inflated due to Hurricane Irma. This is the price for flights from Miami to San Diego. Was $435 last night! Agh ???? pic.twitter.com/4mhR2mfBcD
— Lae Lae (@luv2run25) September 6, 2017
— @Nightcam (@nightcam) September 6, 2017
Totally unacceptable, a $358 flight from Miami to NYC went up to $3578. Why should expect anything decent from these airlines??? F ing RATS! https://t.co/rjdH6J0yOL
— Joseph Pep Nodarse (@joerileyhudson) September 6, 2017
On Wednesday, many airlines began capping flight prices after the outrage went viral.
American Airlines said in a statement to Business Insider that it planned to cap prices at $99 pre-tax on direct flights out of Florida. The cap applies to tickets sold from now until Sunday, September 10, for flights until Wednesday, September 13. The airline said on Twitter this afternoon that it was “not unusual to see higher prices for the last few seats on a flight,” and that it is adding extra flights to the area.
It’s not unusual to see higher prices for the last few seats on a flight. We’re adding extra flights to the area now.
— American Airlines (@AmericanAir) September 6, 2017
Jet Blue has discounted the price of non-stop flights out of Florida to $99 including tax. Connecting flights out of Florida are priced at $159.
Delta also capped prices, albeit at a higher price, charging a maximum of $399 on flights out of Florida and the impacted islands, Yahoo Finance reported.
Hurricane Irma is currently a Category 5 storm with sustained winds of 185 miles per hour. The hurricane has already touched down in parts of the Caribbean, including Barbuda and St. Martin. The National Hurricane Center has described Irma as “potentially catastrophic.”