In a lengthy article published this week, the New York Times outlined five reasons why it believes the summer travel industry is booming – a statement that has the industry saying a silent prayer from God’s mouth to God’s ears.
In summary, this is how it was presented in the Times.
Travel for leisure leads to
Air traffic is still down 53% from 2019, but that’s still an impressive increase from last spring, when it was down almost 90%. The driving force behind all this is a recreational movement.
As business travel continues to decline and companies find financial benefits in holding Zoom meetings, the average plane was 64% full in recent weeks.
People are tired of the prison paradise at home, says Helaine Becker, aviation analyst at investment bank Cowen. I think we’re going to see what I call a jailbreak this summer.
Airline ticket prices will rise
It may even be like old times again if demand forces an increase in airfares. Peter Belobaba, who researches the global airline industry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said travelers can expect a roller coaster ride as airlines carefully manage seat prices.
Hopper, an online travel agency, predicts that airfares will increase by about 12% in May, but will still remain low. It is estimated that the average domestic round trip will be about $257 by mid-summer, up from about $230 now.
Mobility returns to normal.
Enjoy it while you can, because airlines are in financial difficulties that have forced many of them to make drastic changes. Things like the lack of exchange fees, which were a boon during the pandemic, will return to normal during the summer. However, the low-cost airlines will keep prices under control.
Low-cost carriers will return to 2019 levels this summer, maybe even a little more, said Savanthi Syth, an aviation analyst at Raymond James & Associates.
The masks remain
It’s not far-fetched. The face masks stay. But food will return after many airlines stopped serving food and drink in the middle of the pandemic.
Easier access to the outside world
Again, an obvious one. Most airlines, including United, have shifted more routes from former business routes to vacation destinations.
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