The Global coronavirus pandemic has forced travel and accommodation providers all across the globe to cut prices to the lowest levels since the 2007 crisis to persuade travelers back into the market.
The tourism industry has been devastated by the global spread of the Covid-19, which has
made many people cancel their holiday plans, especially on social distancing and self
quarantine recommendations by the global health authorities to fight the virus.
However, those who wish or need to travel would be able to take advantage of deep discounts offered across the sector. Routes between Australia and the US saw the biggest discounts on international airfares.
Currently, return fares between Melbourne and Los Angeles with United Airlines start from $772 per person. That’s even cheaper than the fares that were offered at the height of the discounting during the 2007 crisis.
This represents a steep 30% drop from even the most economical prices in 2010 which were
around $1,142. Virgin offered deep price cuts on Australia – New Zealand travel route with
flights from Auckland to Melbourne for just to $273.
Global tourist Hubs such as Fiji and Thailand are also seeing very low flight and
Accommodation packages with travel brokers providing 7 days Phuket plus packages for under $900 from Australia.
The trend of deep discounts continues in the Australian domestic travel market as well. Especially Asain tourist hotspots like Great Barrier Reef and other areas of Queensland.
US airlines are slashing prices on domestic flights on transcontinental hops, airlines are
significantly reducing flight costs. For example, there is this one-way fare between Baltimore
and Los Angeles on Spirit Airlines for $14. If you connect, American is offering it for $27 .
However, in China, the aviation market has taken a drastic turn. Now, there are domestic flights for as low as $4.The South China Morning Post had reported that Spring Airlines, a major low-cost carrier in China, is offering some flights for frequent flier members for as low as 29 yuan, or just over $4, for a one-way ticket .
Airlines have said in a statement that they are cutting back all additional flights this summer as travel demand has drastically shrunk due to the global coronavirus pandemic. Many major airlines are cutting anywhere between 70% and 75% of domestic flights in April and
about 80% of domestic flights in May. For this month and May, they are cutting nearly 90% of the international flights citing global immigration and lockdown curbs being imposed.
Some U.S. airlines have announced plans not to halt U.S. flights entirely, noting medical
workers and others who must travel, sometimes for urgent medical reasons. According to them, the important thing is to provide a bare minimum level of essential service to customers during this time of crisis and doing so while not burning excessive amounts of cash.
The airlines have no timeline on when things will turn around. The gross bookings have fallen to zero. Given such a grave scenario, the $50 billion in U.S. government loans and grants for the airline industry in the bailout package is their only hope.
Border and Immigration Restrictions put in place by the global authorities to combat the
coronavirus has decelerated the travel market substantially. Most of the hotels and tourism-dependent businesses are finding it hard to survive in current market conditions.
Particularly the over-leveraged players as the timeline of such harsh measures are not quite clear as of now.
These record low fare deals are offered only for short sales periods of a day or a few hours at a time.
Cruise ship industry has been holding up relatively well, even after the Diamond Princess Cruise ship incident which may result in putting people off the high seas for a while. With the cheapest deals, at $73 per day being offered by the beleaguered Princess Cruises.
USA Tourism’s #BookThemOut campaign has seen companies come together for a common goal to offer food, wine, accommodation and adventure packages to help the industry recover.
This is record discounts are not sustainable over the long-term as they are even lower than the breakeven prices for the majority of the service providers.
However, there is light at the end of the tunnel for the industry, considering the historical SARS virus pandemic in 2003. Where after the pandemic was under control the travel and tourism industry bounced back very strong with demand rising all across the board.