The summer travel season is in full flow and to describe it as anything short of a total car crash would be to discredit the current state of affairs. Pent-up demand, sky-high gas prices and supply chain issues have caused non stop problems and significant price hikes to the cost of travel for leisure and corporate travellers alike.
From our own experience, flight prices are up 25% when compared to pre-pandemic rates, even out-pacing inflation which doesn’t bode well for the future cost of travel.
The price hikes we have all seen in recent weeks and months have seen a rise in somewhat dishonourable advertising practices by airlines, with many offering very attractive value fairs. However, these are generally only the base fare, with massively inflated “fees & taxes” only being added on at the checkout!
“To put it in an example, a ticket purchased with Air Canada in April 2019 for a roundtrip flight from Vancouver to London had a total “taxes & fees” component of approx. $680. Today that same ticket has a “taxes & fees” component of $1,050.” Said Danielle Riddle, Inspired Travel Group’s CEO.
In the long term, these prices are completely unsustainable, because the market will eventually be priced out with disposable income drying up at an ever increasing rate thanks to decades high inflation.
The only thing propping up the inflated travel market is the pent-up demand as a result of the pandemic. Many business and leisure travellers are so desperate to escape the confines of their homes, that they are undertaking travel expenses they otherwise couldn’t afford in the current financial climate.
“Right now people are hastily trying to tick off their bucket list. With the pandemic still lingering, and this unique pause on life that was imposed upon us globally, it has undoubtedly influenced people to become fearful of travel bans, lockdowns, etc. being potentially imposed upon us yet again.” Danielle said.
Fortunately, the end may well be in sight as we enter the tail end of the summer travel period.
As we move into the fall, the cost of travel will hopefully dip back to “normal” levels as the demand finally dries up.
The inevitable slow down will hopefully give travel operators the time to reset and provide the essential training they have been neglecting over the summer period.
For our corporate clients, who’s travel picks up out of the tourist season, we will be looking forward to offering you much more variety in your options for travel, something that has been massively restricted by the summertime chaos!
Service as usual may well be on the horizon and we couldn’t be more excited; it has been a difficult summer for just about everyone as we all got used to spreading our wings again.