Holidaymakers warned of soaring prices for the summer months

Holidaymakers warned of soaring prices for the summer months

Demand for beach resorts has spiked significantly.

Holidaymakers have been warned that flight prices could rise by nearly 10% this summer due to soaring demand for European resorts.

Ryanair and the Irish Travel Agents Association have said demand for beach resorts has spiked significantly, while airlines and airports have not recovered to pre-Covid capacity levels

Pat Dawson, chief executive of the Irish Travel Agents Association, described it as a classic case of demand outstripping supply.

“There are more people looking to travel than there are seats on flights,” he said. 

“That’s the main reason we’re seeing fares going up.” 

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary said holidaymakers should be braced for price rises of almost 10% over the peak season, as demand for breaks rebounds after the lifting of pandemic travel restrictions.

The budget airline's chief executive also said there were likely to be ongoing delays at airports across Europe, blaming staff shortages.

Ryanair signalled prices would ramp up over the next few months due to a cut of about 15% in European flight programmes across the sector over the summer.

"For the September quarter at the moment, based on about 50% of all bookings, we expect prices will be up high single-digit per cent," Mr O'Leary said.

It seems to us that there will be higher prices into that peak summer period because there's so much demand for the beaches of Europe and those price rises are going to continue."

The Ryanair group said its peak fares for this summer may rise above those seen before the pandemic struck.

The sentiment echoes the latest figures from the Consumer Price Index that airfares rose 31.9% in the space of just one month between March and April.

Airfares have nearly doubled in price since April 2021, according to the CSO, but those figures date back to the period of high levels of Covid restrictions.

Mr Dawson insisted soaring fuel costs wouldn’t have a major role in hiking airfares this summer, as most airlines have hedged oil at cheaper prices.

“At the start of this holiday season, fares were high from the get-go,” he said. 

“It’s because we have reduced capacity. Cork Airport would have reduced capacity and Aer Lingus have reduced flights, from Cork in particular.” 

He said the cost of flights over the coming weeks was reasonable, but they will rise significantly once schools break for the summer.

“There’ll be further peaks at the October bank holiday weekend, and the Christmas season,” he said. 

“The supply isn’t there that we would like. Hopefully, that will improve as time goes on.

“We have heard from consumers that accommodation on the ground is reasonable. But it’s airfares that are going very high.” 

Mr Dawson said high airfares will likely continue throughout the summer and into the “foreseeable future”.

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