According to the ITB World Travel Trends Report, commissioned by the world’s leading travel trade show and compiled by the consultancy IPK International, a short- to mid-term rise in the price of airline tickets is to be expected worldwide. Travelers will have to bear the cost of anticipated increases in taxes and charges by paying extra for tickets, according to the report.
The ITB World Travel Trends Report states that in order to become profitable again, airlines will have to significantly adjust their ticket prices. The findings are based on the assessments of 60 tourism experts from 30 countries, on a special IPK International trend analysis undertaken in leading source markets and on core data supplied by the World Travel Monitor®, recognized as the largest ongoing survey of global travel trends in some 60 source countries. The report notes that “current airline prices are clearly too low to allow airlines to become profitable again.”
Despite the worldwide recession, the ITB World Travel Trends Report expects commercial aviation to grow dynamically over the next two decades. The Chinese market is predicted to expand annually by around 8.4 percent, followed by the Asian-Pacific region (6.9 percent), and South America (estimated at 6.4 percent). The European market is forecast to grow by 3.4 percent, lagging significantly behind the expected global average growth rate of 4.9 percent.
Dr. Martin Buck, vice president, CompetenceCenter Travel & Logistics, Messe Berlin, stated: “The currently unanswered question facing the world’s airline industries is whether price-conscious consumers will continue to drive the downgrading trend we are seeing in bookings or whether we will witness a return to the situation we had before the worldwide economic and financial crisis began. It also remains to be seen whether companies will limit their business travel to a minimum and how video conferences and other new forms of communication technology will influence travel behavior.”
According to Dr. Martin Buck, the recession has already had a positive effect, “The over-capacity of the world’s airline industries has been reduced and older planes, which consume large amounts of kerosene, have been taken out of service.” In the short term, a full recovery of demand is unlikely. Describing the situation he added that “flat is the new growth.”
From December 15, 2009 the ITB World Travel Trends Report 2009/2010 can be downloaded free of charge from www.itb-berlin.com/media centre/publications .