2021 is now underway, but the aviation industry still faces considerable difficulties when it comes to passenger activity. Travel restrictions and public concerns continue to create challenges. Will cheap airfares help the market recover this year?
BNN Bloomberg highlights that fares as low as $12.33, complimentary travel insurance, free hotel bookings, and 2-for-1 deals will tempt passengers to go on their travels again. Moreover, newer business models, such as airline subscription services, also give travelers incentives to continue boarding.
Airlines started to introduce ultra-low airfares last summer to help fill up aircraft following the downturn caused by the global health crisis. Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary believed that this would be integral for recovery.
“The only way we can recover is by setting much lower prices for 12 to 24 months. That’s why we need to cut costs and cut pay,” O’Leary said last summer, as reported by the Daily Mail.
“Hard-pressed families in Manchester or Liverpool or Glasgow have been locked up with their kids for weeks. Are we seriously suggesting they’re going to go to Blackpool in the rain for their summer holiday as opposed to the Algarve or Malaga? They are so conditioned to going to the Mediterranean resorts. I don’t see that changing.”
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Is it all about the money?
It has now been half a year since the European summer commenced, and the industry is back in the same position as it was when the pandemic first started. Restrictions are tightened, and the laws are making it challenging for passengers to hit the skies.
However, during the period of relaxed restrictions that Europe went through during the summer months, there was a small rise in activity across the continent. Ultimately, it was the second wave of the virus, leading to the return of lockdowns and border measures that halted growth.
Nonetheless, during the short relaxed period, it was evident that passengers would return to the skies if the conditions allow them to. If there is are fairer restrictions that enable fliers to travel safely and reasonably, then cheap airfares will push many customers to purchase more tickets.
Once passengers are in the air for the first time, many may overcome the initial concern of traveling in the new climate. Once these aspects are faced, it will be easier to handle the situation going forward.
A balance is needed
Altogether, it won’t just be cheap tickets that will lead the recovery effort. Balanced, coordinated restrictions with consistent control over the virus will also be crucial. The demand is there, but passengers physically can’t board a plane if policies don’t allow them to. Primarily, a successful vaccine rollout may be the most critical factor.
Do you think that cheap tickets will help significantly in the bid the open up travel this year? Or do you think other factors are more critical? Let us know what you think of the situation in the comment section.