It's a Bird! It's a Plane! It's a Free Market!


Airline deregulation isn't very sexy, but trips to Paris are. And thanks to the former, the latter is about to become a lot easier:

On March 30, the so-called open-skies agreement goes into effect, allowing airlines based in the United States and Europe to fly across the Atlantic between any two airports in each region. Before the pact, trans-Atlantic flights were governed by separate agreements between the United States and individual European nations. The pacts required airlines to take off or land in their native countries, and limited which airlines could serve certain airports.

For example, British Airways flights bound for the United States had to originate in Britain. And only two United States carriers were permitted to land at Heathrow Airport, near London: American and United.

The happy free market results:

When the open-skies agreement kicks in next week, those restrictions will be lifted, essentially letting the open market dictate all trans-Atlantic routes between the United States and Europe.

More sultry airline deregulation stories here and here