Fewer flights, higher fares making air travel a luxury

Funviralpark 1 year ago 0 3

Angus Whitley Bloomberg News

The jet age, which has globalized air travel for half a century, has come to an abrupt end due to COVID-19. Airplanes are now back in the skies, but the prevalence of them has gone in reverse. Fewer aircraft are using smaller networks, and fares are rising.

Cirium data shows that thousands of flights to major hubs such as Singapore, London and Doha are being descheduled every month. Flying most places abroad is more expensive. And while some markets, such as the US, are nearly back to pre-virus capacity, parts of Asia and Europe are more than a quarter below their 2019 levels.

A rapid recovery in post-virus demand has overwhelmed the airline industry, which has lost about $187 billion since 2020 under the weight of travel restrictions. More than 2,000 cities have lost connectivity, and airlines are increasing ticket prices on many routes. Air travel, as the data shows, is for the rich and the lesser.

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Simon Küstenmacher, co-founder of Melbourne-based advisory firm The Demographics Group, said: “Flying has moved into the luxury market. The pandemic has created a clear line between winners and losers in the global economy. Drawing the line is further evidence, he said.

Here are four realities of air travel today.

1. Ticket prices are high

The appetite for travel is so strong that airlines have been able to more than double fares on some routes, especially business class seats.

Joe Rieder, Chief Executive Officer of New York-based Passenger Experience Association APEX, said:

2. Hard to find flights

Service is scarce in every region, making it difficult for travelers to catch flights that suit them or connect them to their next destination.

Globally, approximately 100,000 flights have been removed from pre-COVID schedules each week. According to OAG data, there were 616,330 weekly flights in early December, down 14% from 716,727 during the same period in 2019.

3. Reduced connectivity

A reduction in the number of flights to major transit hubs has reduced social mobility. For example, Cathay Pacific and British Airways are operating all 95 of his flights from Hong Kong to London Heathrow this month, Cirium reports. In December 2019, there were 234 flights on the same route.

4. Difficult to secure a seat

There are also fewer seats to contend with on international flights as airlines struggle to rebuild the fleet they boasted before the pandemic.

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