CLEVELAND — Are you planning on taking a vacation? Local travel agents tell News 5 that airfare from northeast Ohio is expected to rise as gas prices rise.
In 2020, many flights never left the ground. Now, in 2022, the number of planes taking off daily is starting to resemble pre-pandemic days.
“The number of people visiting Hopkins over the past few weeks has been about 90 to 93 percent of what we were in 2019,” said John Hogan of Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.
Hogan said the airport is seeing hundreds of travelers packed up and ready to leave the state, and they don’t expect that to stop any time soon, even with the gas rising.
“Here at the airport, we haven’t seen any change since the price of petrol went up. The volume is up there and for the foreseeable future. We are seeing volumes exceeding almost 2019. The effects will not be visible at airports,” Hogan said.
Consumers will see prices increase online when purchasing their tickets.
Dr. Jasmien Lewis is the owner of Travel Life Services, a travel agency that helps people book their trips.
“We got a lot of calls for fall and summer trips this year,” Lewis said.
Lewis works with about four different airlines to book vacations. She says the rise in prices consumers are seeing right now is not surprising given the time of year and the influx of travellers.
“Every year the prices go up for travel. So it’s more than expected,” Lewis said.
The increase in the cost of fuel for aircraft is the next factor; this will further increase ticket prices, but the effects will not be felt for a few months.
“We are a bit behind there. As far as the airlines are concerned, they buy fuel in advance, so they have reserves,” Lewis said.
The good thing is that the airlines have a cap on airfare prices.
“A normal flight that would normally cost $500 will not cost a million dollars; they have a cap that they have to live up to,” Lewis said.
Even with the expected rise in ticket prices, Hogan says trends show travelers are still flying out of Cleveland Hopkins, for now.
“They want to go out, they want to see the world. At this point, gas prices are not holding them back and it might even push people to travel by plane rather than by car,” Hogan said.
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