It was almost a month ago that Bloomberg reported that the summer plane tickets were beginning to peak in inflationary pressureand we’ve seen prices drop consistently as fuel prices fell in recent weeks. However, prices are still likely to remain higher than a year ago, and there is little sign that there will be any kind of price war during the rest of 2022.
High demand and a limited number of flights may still remain a problem.
Ticket prices fell sharply in July – 7.8% compared to a month ago. This helped ease overall inflation. With the summer vacation season winding down and the fall just over a month away, aviation experts expect prices to continue to fall as demand eases.
Prices were one of the few shopping categories to see a decline this summer, even as consumer prices rose at the fastest pace in more than four decades. Inflation increased by 9.1% in Juneeven more than expected, but the good news is that Core inflation fell 0.5% in July – a sign that price increases are finally starting to slow. But again, this was mainly due to the drop in oil priceswhich is having a slow trickle-down effect on the economy.
Return to normal flight fares
Prices peaked mostly in May, when travelers began to confirm their summer travel plans. After two years of relative caution, summer 2022 was the busiest travel season since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, airlines were forced to cut the number of flights to reduce the risk of delays and mass cancellations due to weather and staffing concerns. This raised rates.
The issue was exacerbated by high labor and fuel costs.
Flight prices typically drop in late summer to mid-fall as travel eases, but they can rise as the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays approach.
According to New York Times, which cited data from ride-booking and price-tracking app Hopper, fares are expected to average $286 this month, down nearly 25% from May. The good news for those looking to book a flight is that fares are expected to stay below $300 until September, before rising again to a peak of $373 in November. This represents an expected increase of 24% from the same month in 2019, just before the start of the pandemic.
Airlines that fly high
Although airlines have reduced the number of flights, major carriers, including American Airlines and Delta, have reduced the number of flights saw their income increaseeven surpassing 2019 levels.
“Customers continue to return to travel in record numbers,” American CEO Robert Isom said during the airline’s second-quarter earnings call last month. He added that 2022 has already seen “one of the busiest summers we have ever experienced”.
Although prices are falling, fliers may face limited options. Airline executives have predicted that we won’t return to pre-pandemic versions of flight at least until next summer. In other words, book early when you can.
A senior editor for 1945, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He writes regularly about military equipment, firearms history, cyber security and international affairs. Peter is also one Contributing writer for Forbes. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.