By  | 

Airline passenger numbers are up about 6% nationwide compared to last year, when America was still reeling from the terrorist attacks.

If you're flying for the holidays, you may have noticed the fares are all over the board. That's especially true when comparing flights from Denver International Airport and from the Colorado Springs Airport. Travel experts say lower fares depend on how much competition is in the market, and the more low air fare carriers there are, the lower the prices across the board.

If you live in Southern Colorado, it's convenient to fly out of the Springs airport. But is it cheaper? Using random dates and destinations, we asked a travel agent to run some numbers and compare the Springs Airport with DIA.

Leaving Colorado and headed to Los Angeles from November 30th to December 7th, travelers can save roughly $185 flying out of Denver. Headed to Portland out of Denver, travelers can save a little more than $100.

But you're headed to Las Vegas, Allegiant Airlines out of Colorado Springs can get you there for almost $285 cheaper.

So why is there such a big difference between the two? Some say it's because Denver has more discount air carriers. The Springs has only two, including Great Plains. And with less passenger traffic, getting additional discount carriers here, is unlikely.

For Southern Colorado travelers, it comes down to deciding what's more important, convenience or price.