Obamas take his and hers flights to LA

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Washington (CNN)When the President and the First Lady hopped off the plane at LAX on Thursday to tape media appearances, they did so on separate flights.

The President read "Mean Tweets" and talked about Ferguson on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the First Lady danced to "Uptown Funk" and announced the #GimmeFive challenge, part of her Let's Move! campaign, on The Ellen Degeneres Show. Although both shows taped in Burbank, California, the First Lady flew earlier in the day and the President arrived in the late afternoon.
"I believe on this occasion the schedules were not in sync to travel together," Deputy Press Secretary Eric Schultz told reporters Friday. "I'm not even sure they overlapped."
    While President Obama attended a DNC fundraiser Thursday night and traveled to Phoenix Friday morning, the First Lady returned home to the White House Thursday afternoon.
    For a normal couple with hectic work schedules, separate travel arrangements aren't uncommon, but the Obamas can't just book a commercial flight. The taxpayer costs of private transportation can add up.
    A 2014 FOIA request to the Air Force from watchdog group Judicial Watch found that the cost per flying hour for Air Force One is $206,337. Cost per flying hour includes "fuel, flight consumables, depot level repairables, aircraft overhaul, and engine overhaul." At that rate, the President's flight to Los Angeles, which clocked in at just under five hours, cost over $1 million.
    The First Lady's office would not provide specific details about the plane Mrs. Obama took to California. ​The Air Force lists the cost per flying hour for a C-32, which is frequently used for dignitary travel, at $28,834 in 2014, but notes that the costs for Presidential travel can be calculated differently.
    "The lack of transparency on Presidential travel and the First Lady's travel makes it tough for taxpayers to determine whether specific trips are wasteful or completely necessary. If this was an unavoidable scheduling roadblock, or a choice made for convenience at taxpayer expense, is difficult to know, and makes all the difference," said National Taxpayer Union's Douglas Kellogg.
    "In general, the cost of flying Air Force One has gone up significantly over the past decade, the President has a duty to taxpayers to make prudent travel decisions," Kellogg said.