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‘Be on the ball’: Airfares tipped to drop

Written by on May 14, 2024

Australian airfares are tipped to fall following the mire of the pandemic and despite grinding inflation.

The decreases are driven by airlines putting on more flights.

Travel insiders say fares in, out and around Australia could come down on average about 13 per cent in coming months.

Speaking on the Today show on Tuesday morning, Australia Tourism and Transport Forum chief executive Margy Osmond said the more seats coming in and out of the country, the cheaper the prices would get.

“And now we’re starting to see that return of so many airlines. That went away during Covid,” Ms Osmond said.

“So yes, you’re going to see more of these prices coming down as there are more seats and more capacity.”

“Across the board you’re probably looking at something like 13 per cent decrease in fares. I think there’ll be spots in the market where you see a much bigger decrease than that.”

Data from global business travel consultant FCM Travel and Flight Centre Travel Group shows Australasian seat numbers have been slowest to return to pre-pandemic levels.

Against North America, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and Europe, Australasia is the only region with fewer monthly seats than in 2019.

North America, Latin America, Europe and Australia all have fewer flights per month than the start of 2019.

However, hotel prices in all the Australian capital cities, plus Cairns, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown, are down on end-of-2023 prices.

Prices between hundreds of major international city “pairs” are up 11 per cent or $68 on the same time in 2019.

Ms Osmond said consumers would need trigger fingers to take advantage of impending deals.

“Get yourself onto the website of those airlines with regularity. Just keep checking them and get yourself on their lists with their apps to get notifications,” she said.

“What’s happening a lot now is they’re having flash sales, so you need to be on the ball.

“If you’re planning an overseas trip, make sure you’re getting the notifications from your airlines of choice in terms of those inexpensive airfares and do your research … sometimes these things will appear because there’s suddenly extra seats. You really just need to be on the ball and be a very active traveller.”