Australians facing flights costing thousands of dollars as demand skyrockets
Flying home to Australia is what will sting you.
Aussies hoping to fit in an overseas holiday before the end of 2021 should get ready to fork out thousands – as desperate expats and limited seats hike prices.
Aussies will be able to escape overseas in a matter of weeks but the relatively cheap prices and deals that were commonplace back in 2019 could be a thing of the past.
Experts are increasingly issuing warnings to hopeful jetsetters to be on alert for exorbitant costs as tens of thousands of Australians still stuck overseas try desperately to get home.
The continuation of hotel quarantine for international travellers, and Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s suggestion Australia wouldn’t open up to tourists until next year, also mean many international airlines will continue to offer stripped down flight rostering, meaning the competition for a seat has never been stronger.
According to data from travel booking site KAYAK, getting out of Australia is relatively easy and reasonably priced.
But coming back, with Australians competing for a seat with the more than 45,000 expats still stuck overseas, is where costs tend to spike.
The data from KAYAK showed the average cost of a one-way ticket from Sydney to London between November and December is $1012.
Coming back however is the painful part – with the return leg costing a whopping $2109.
Economy tickets between Sydney and New Delhi, the most in-demand route on KAYAK in the past month, follows a similar pattern.
A flight over to India costs, on average, $1051 between November and December.
Returning will cost you $2688.
Flying to the US isn’t much cheaper, with many flights to Los Angeles in December spiking as high as $5000 for a return ticket.
International travel will be very different, and more expensive, as the world navigates living with coronavirus.
All airlines flying in and out of Australia require proof of a negative Covid-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test result provided by a laboratory.
• The results of this test must be obtained within 72 hours of the flight.
• Another thing to note is that Covid tests for travellers are not covered by Medicare.
• Private pathology labs offer Covid tests for around $140 to $200.
• For travellers needing a result on the same day, that price can jump up to $300.
Speaking to The Guardian, IBISWorld analyst Tom Youl estimated “it could take a full year” before airlines return to 2019 prices and the same flying capacities seen back then.
However, Flight Centre boss Graham Turner had a different take, saying he expected the cost of flights to stay fair until the end of 2021 as airlines worked to build trust in international travel again.
“There’s still 18 international airlines flying into Australia … they don’t all have the same seat availability they did before but once you can travel without hotel quarantine, things will go back to normal,” he said.
Mr Turner earlier predicted fares wouldn’t be “that expensive” and would likely be in line with the usual pre-Christmas rush prices.
“Everyone want to see family at this time so there’ll be a fair bit of demand because everyone wants to see their family but I think it’ll be normal, pre-Covid, high season prices once everything comes back on the market.”
Mr Turner spoke to news.com.au earlier this month, when Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the international travel ban, that has been in place since March 2020, would be axed next month.
But a recent report suggested Mr Morrison and the new NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet were already discussing bringing the mid-November date further forward, as NSW’s vaccination rates surge.
The proposal outlined by the Prime Minister follows discussions with Mr Perrottet about fast-tracking the rollout of home quarantine.
“The NSW Premier and I have been discussing how we can accelerate our plan to open international travel when home quarantine is made available,’’ Mr Morrison said last week.
“I know the NSW Government is looking at ways to fast track home quarantine in November and if that happens we will be able to move to facilitate the opening up of the international border into NSW sooner.
“Now, that would mean home quarantine for vaccinated Australians wishing to return home via Sydney and giving the option for international travel for vaccinated Australians to leave and return.”
Source : news.com.au