Flying the friendly skies is more like flying the ridiculously expensive skies.

Plane tickets are not cheap. Even when they're discounted, they're still pricey and we've become accustomed to forking over a good chunk of cash because...well, just because.

As is the case with most things in life, though, there are reasons why flying runs all of us a pretty penny (even if the cost of flying has gone down over the years).

Sure, there's the cost of fuel, which probably seems like the most obvious. But there are all sorts of other factors in play. The crew, taxes (lots and lots of taxes), the cost of the aircraft itself, maintenance and labor, the behind-the-scenes costs an airline needs to keep the business afloat and insurance. When all is said and done, airlines don't exactly fill an entire first class cabin with all the money it's raking in.

Of course, you don't want to hear about how airlines may not be swimming in profits. You just long for the chance to get from Cleveland to Phoenix on time with your luggage in tow. Making that happen, though, is a whole other story.

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