Now that “private jet” has become the new “welfare queen,” how about changing the law that forbids airports to market-price operations slots? A private jet carrying the CEO and his girlfriend uses up a slot that could otherwise allow a 777 to take off or land. That would be unaffordable at any major airport if the slots were sold at market-clearing prices.
All the other benefits of getting those prices right – being able to afford decent airports services, fewer delays – would come as gravy.
Update A reader supplies some technical detail:
Landing fees are generally assessed on aircraft weight: at LAX, e.g., fees for passenger planes are $3.85 per 1000 lbs of landed weight. But the scarce resource that needs to be allocated is runway time, and smaller planes, which are slower and more vulnerable to wake turbulence and thus need greater separation when interspersed with larger aircraft, actually consume more runway time than larger planes.