Return summer trip as EU agrees to let vaccinated Americans visit
(NEW YORK) – Summer travel bookings are increasing as the number of vaccines increases and borders reopen.
The European Union announced Wednesday that it would open its doors to vaccinated Americans who have been barred from entry for more than a year.
“I think people are really looking forward to their first trip home,” Scott Keyes, founder of Scott’s Cheap Flights and author of Take more vacation, told ABC News. “They’ve been vaccinated and feel safe and comfortable traveling – they want to make their first trip a big one.”
Hopper, a travel booking app, reported that airfares to Europe had increased 17% since the start of May, with round-trip travel averaging around $ 880. Hopper said he expects those prices to rise after the EU’s announcement.
“The surge in travel demand is in full swing,” Keyes said. “If you look at the number of searches for flights, especially the most iconic travel destinations like Hawaii or Cancun, it is higher today than it was at the same time two years ago before the pandemic – it’s not even close. “
U.S. airlines are betting big on Americans catching the travel bug this summer, adding capacity to destinations like Iceland and Croatia that have announced they will accept vaccinated Americans.
“They really want to take advantage of this spike in interest to visit these places after announcing that they are open to tourism again,” Keyes said.
Demand for travel is also growing nationally, with more Americans considering “stays.”
American Airlines said it plans to serve around 90% of its summer 2019 capacity in 2021, while United Airlines said current bookings “far exceed bookings for summer 2020”.
Domestic airline ticket prices, according to Hopper, are expected to rise 16% this spring, peaking in late June.
By Independence Day, Hopper predicts domestic airline ticket prices to approach pre-pandemic levels.
Danielle Wilson of Columbus, Ohio, who calls herself a “pride thrifty”, plans to travel with her family this summer for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
“We can’t wait,” Wilson said, adding that their dream trip with their one-year-old son would be “anywhere that has a sandy beach.”
“Our biggest winner right now is Destin, Florida,” she said.
Wilson said that although she has spent 24 hours a day, seven days a week with her husband and son during the pandemic, she looks forward to spending more time together – albeit a little differently – on vacation.
“It’s more that experience of being together, of looking at our son, of seeing the mountains for the first time seeing the beach for the first time, kind of building those memories with him,” she said. . “It’s what excites us the most – just getting out of our daily grind, getting away from work, and getting away from household chores.”
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