Airfares are likely to remain “competitive” as the industry restarts more flights and routes in the coming weeks and months.
Although airlines are facing a continued financial crisis due to Covid-19, this is unlikely to lead to a major spike in flight prices, according to airline executives speaking at TTG Media’s virtual seminar Restart travel: Restoring Trust.
Lee Haslett, vice-president of sales and operations at Virgin Atlantic, said the aviation sector would “remain highly competitive” as it emerged out of the pandemic crisis.
“It think prices will reflect that,” he added. “From a Virgin Atlantic perspective, we will always seek to be competitive. From the consumer perspective, there’s going to be more flexibility in certain ticket types than previously.
“Airlines need to encourage people to start booking again and to start travelling again. Our research shows that one of the big things people want to see is flexibility and ease of being able to book.
“If you turn up at the airport and have a high temperature, you need to have a more flexible ticket.
“Fares will remain competitive as long as there’s competition. We need to make sure customers have as much flexibility as possible.”
Julie Murphy, country sales manager UK and Ireland at All Nippon Airways, added: “How do you create the right supply to meet demand? That’s a very fine balancing act.
“The restart of aviation needs to be given far greater priority [by the government] at this point.”