The holidays are drawing near. Meanwhile, airline managements and companies claimed that demand rose at the same rate as airfares.
For instance, a nonstop ticket from Chicago to any destination in New York from November 22 to 27 starts at around $500 for round trips. Furthermore, round-trip airline tickets from Los Angeles to Seattle begin at $500. Although this is bad news for travelers, airline companies benefit greatly during the final quarter of this year. United, American, and Delta, the country’s top three airline companies, said they project record profits of more than $2 billion.
Airline management provides various tips and critical details to assist you in skillfully booking your tickets during the hectic holidays.
Demand for holidays is robust
Advance season reservations have immensely grown compared to last year. According to market analysts, the number of passengers booking flights is expected to be higher than pre-pandemic levels. The companies did not provide any statistics, though. A considerable increase is visible in November and December. Despite the rising cost of tickets, people still buy them in a hurry, if only to get where they’re going for the holidays.
“It’s going to be a very strong holiday season – Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s,” said Ed Bastian, CEO of Delta.
Two years of airline delays prompted people to purchase more
“I know there are some pretty significant macro shifts in spending – out of goods and into services, which we are a beneficiary of,” added Bastian.
“After two years of delaying travel, it is clear that consumers are getting out and seeing the world. So we’re glad to see people back on the road.”
The United Airlines chief commercial officer, Andrew Nocella, noted the airlines’ overwhelmingly strong holiday demand.
“We are seeing a lot of strength for the holidays or approaching the Thanksgiving period, and our bookings are incredibly strong. However, the bookings are a little bit different this year. And they’re more spread out across multiple days than they were on any single day,” he added.
You need to buy now because prices will soar soon
According to Hayley Berg, the lead economist at the booking and travel app Hopper, airlines brought up ticket prices as the months went by. Some already upped prices by 40% on some routes. In addition, several routes saw an increase in the airfare of 20–30%.
“We see airfare to those top destinations, the ones with the highest demand at the holidays, are much higher than they typically are at this time of year. And they’re only going to increase from here,” Berg explained.
Fly on Monday before the holiday, and return days after the holidays
“We’re going to have fewer flights available and more travelers looking to go home or go on vacation for the holidays. That means that you might be paying a much higher price and unable to get a seat on the specific flight you want to take,” Berg said.
“Most travelers will want to fly a few days before the holiday and return a few days after. That means prices are those dates are going to be extremely high, capacity is going to sell out, and airports are going to be chaotic,” she added.
But according to Berg, both the Monday before and the day of the holiday see a decrease in prices.
Photo Credit: Julia Nikhinson
Opinions expressed by CEO Weekly contributors are their own.