Experts expect travel costs to rise over the holiday season for a variety of reasons, suggesting that people should book as soon as possible as ticket prices continue to rise.
“Flights have only gone up in price since last year,” said travel expert John DiScala. “It’s crazy how high they are.”
Travel industry experts have indicated that the demand for flights is increasing, even amid inflation that is hitting many of the nation’s industries. They call it ‘vengeance travel’, referring to the renewed desire to take to the road or the skies after years of suffering from the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Hopper, the online travel agency, ticket prices are expected to hit prices they haven’t seen in more than five years. They show a drastic increase in costs for the upcoming holidays.
Compared to pre-pandemic numbers in 2019, Thanksgiving travel tickets are up $350 or 22%, while Christmas travel costs are up 31% or $463.
“If you can buy your tickets before mid-October, you should be able to find a pretty good deal. If you wait after that, it goes up and up every day,” DiScala said.
He noted that despite increased demand, some airlines have been forced to cut flights due to staff shortages in the wake of the pandemic, as many employees retired, switched industries or were laid off.
As a result, the flights are overcrowded.
“Every flight I was on is really, really packed,” said Sarah Holdren, a traveler at LAX. “Every seat occupied.”
DiScala said the lack of staff could also lead to major delays in airport operations.
“You also want to try to avoid checking a bag because that will add time on both sides,” he said. “There isn’t enough staff, so you’re going to wait longer.”
While experts suggest that LAX has some of the lower prices in the Southland, travelers passing through the country’s fifth busiest airport will pay in other ways, due to ongoing construction that will ease congestion and long wait times at security, baggage claim claim and check caused.