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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

U.S. Airlines’ December 2022 Fuel Cost per Gallon Down 5.3% from November 2022; Aviation Fuel Consumption Down 5.2% from Pre-Pandemic December 2019

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

The Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) today released U.S. airlines’ December fuel cost and consumption numbers indicating U.S. scheduled service airlines used 1.471 billion gallons of fuel, 5.3% more fuel than in November 2022 (1.398 billion gallons) and 5.2% less than in pre-pandemic December 2019. The cost per gallon of fuel in December 2022 ($3.14) was down 18 cents (5.3%) from November 2022 ($3.32) and up $1.14 (57.0%) from December 2019. Total December 2022 fuel expenditure ($4.63B) was down 0.3% from November 2022 ($4.64B) and up 48.7% from pre-pandemic December 2019.

Year-over-year increases in fuel consumption and cost for December include 3.0% in domestic fuel consumption, 51.4% in domestic fuel cost, and 47.0% in cost per gallon.  Domestic fuel consumption increased 4.2% from November to December in 2022, while decreasing 5.0% from December 2019.  Increased fuel consumption reflects an increase in airline passenger travel over the same period.

Line graph showing U.S. Airlines Fuel Consumption, January 2020 - December 2022

Fuel consumed by U.S. airlines (total) scheduled service:

December 2019:       1.55 billion gallons
December 2021:    1.35 billion gallons
November 2022:    1.40 billion gallons
December 2022:    1.47 billion gallons

Line graph showing U.S. Airlines Fuel Cost Per Gallon for January 2020 through December 2022

Fuel cost per gallon for U.S. airlines (total) scheduled service:

December 2019:    $2.00
December 2021:    $2.14
November 2022:    $3.32
December 2022:    $3.14

Total fuel cost for U.S. airlines (total) scheduled service:

December 2019:    $3.11 billion
December 2021:    $2.88 billion
November 2022:    $4.64 billion
December 2022:    $4.63 billion

Fuel Cost and Consumption data from January 2000 to the present can be found at Summaries by month are also available.

Airline fuel costs may be affected by hedging, contracts that allow airlines to limit exposure to future price changes. 
Individual airline numbers through September 2022 are available on the BTS website. 

Please Note:

The information provided within BTS statistical releases may not be based on 100% of reporting carriers.  Generally, data are released per schedule if reports have been received from at least 90% of the carriers, along with data from all the major carriers.  Regarding this release, the following carriers remain pending: Elite Airways (2HQ), Caribbean Sun Airlines (WL) and Kalitta Charters II (KLQ).  Also, within text, percent change results may not be exact due to rounding.