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01/08/2015 05:08 pm ET Updated Jan 08, 2015

What You're Actually Buying When You Buy A Plane Ticket

Airlines are notorious for gouging customers with outrageous ticket prices. But what are you actually paying for?

You're basically buying a privilege revokable by an airline's laws or policies, according to University of Central Florida aviation law professor Tim Ravich.

Ravich told HuffPost Live's Josh Zepps on Thursday that just like flowers or food, plane tickets are "a perishable commodity," which explains the airlines' many "pricing schemes and manipulations."

"Once an airplane takes off, there’s no way to recover the value of that fee," he said. "So putting a butt in a chair, even at a marginal amount, is so critical to airlines that that's why you see all these permutations and combinations."

Watch the full HuffPost Live conversation about airfare hacks here.

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