Flying is about to get ‘more expensive’ – but flight cancellations are not the cause

Travel chaos: Flying to be 'more expensive' reveals expert

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The landscape of the aviation industry has changed exponentially over the course of the past few years. Many holidaymakers have been left disappointed in recent months due to flight cancellations. Willie Walsh, Director general of the International Air Transport Association, spoke about this travel issue on BBC One this morning.

Walsh started off by assuring travellers that while flight cancellations are are certainty this summer, not every holidaymaker will be affected.

He said: “I think it’s important to put it into context, it’s not at every airport and it’s not on every airline.

“In fact, many airports around Europe are functioning perfectly well.”

He continued: “There have been some challenges in the UK; it’s well documented Manchester had problems in the early stages, Heathrow certainly has difficulties at the moment.”

But while cancellations are inevitable over the summer holidays, Walsh emphasised the importance of these being made “early”.

This will allow customers to adapt to the revised flying schedules and plan accordingly.

So should travellers be worrying about their existing bookings, or proceeding to chance a cancellation by booking flights?

“I think there will be some disruption but I don’t think it’s on the scale that we’ve seen to date.

“I believe that there are solutions being put in place.”

But British Airways, for example, have recently announced the cancellation of around 10,000 more flights, with some future passengers not yet knowing that their flights are cancelled.

In response to this, Walsh said: “Well I would hope that those flights that are being cancelled would be announced very quickly.

“I’m surprised that they haven’t been announced, certainly I believe they should have announced it as soon as they made clear they would be cancelling.”

He continued that these flights may currently have very low bookings.

Walsh estimated that only 20 percent of seats would have been booked on some cancelled flights.

He revealed that the lead in time for bookings has “significantly changed” over a two year period.

Consequently, Walsh stated: “I don’t think airlines will have a difficulty accommodating the people that have made bookings.”

Asked if people were going to lose money over this, he said: “Absolutely not”.

The expert assured travellers that flight cancellations should not see them “suffer financially”.

So as for whether flight cancellations will see flights become more expensive, Walsh does not believe this is the case.

According to the expert, flying is about to get a lot more costly for travellers – but it’s nothing due to airport chaos and flight cancellations.

“I think flights are getting more expensive because of the high price of oil, and it’s been clear to everybody that this will be reflected in higher ticket prices.”

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