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Fares are low and demand is high.

Jess McHugh
April 07, 2017

Airfares have dropped 10 percent in the past year, as demand has continued to grow, according to research from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), a Montreal-based trade group.

A strong economic environment, coupled with this healthy demand, contributed to the low fares, the report concluded.

This growth has occurred despite recent impediments to travel, including several U.S. executive orders that attempted to restrict entry from several Muslim majority countries. Industry experts feared that a recent ban on large electronics on certain Middle Eastern carriers would also dampen demand, but so far that has not been the case.

"Although we remain concerned over the impact of any travel restrictions or closing of borders, we have not seen the attempted U.S. ban on travel from six countries translate into an identifiable traffic trend," IATA director general Alexandre de Juniac said in a press relaease, adding, "Overall travel demand continues to grow at a robust rate."

Middle Eastern carriers have in fact seen some of the strongest growth in demand recently, with an increase of 9.5 percent compared with February 2016. European carriers saw demand increase by 6.5 percent, and North American carriers saw just 0.3 percent growth in demand, making their growth the lowest of the regions.

IATA continued to voice concerns over any restriction in travel, however, noting the volatility of airfares and carrier growth.

“It’s intolerable that governments continue to add to the uncertainties facing the air transport industry by failing to engage airline operational know-how on issues that can damage public confidence. The introduction of restrictions on the carry-on of large electronic devices was a missed opportunity and the result was a measure that cannot stand up to the scrutiny of public confidence in the long term,” de Juniac said.

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