Many airlines currently advertise fares that initially omit some government taxes and fees, which is allowed, though the uniform nature of those charges makes shopping for fares fairly easy.

But if the large airlines win their lobbying battle to loosen industry advertising regulations, the proposed changes would give them leeway to also advertise fares that do not include the entire amount that the airline would receive. For instance, an airline could advertise a fare and then add a fuel surcharge, increasing the overall cost of the ticket.

That could make price comparison more difficult.

"It looks like the airlines are going to get free rein to do whatever they want," said Henry H. Harteveldt, a travel analyst at Forrester Research. "Buying an airfare is confusing enough now. This could make it even more confusing."

Get the full story at The New York Times