Easter is coming, airline ticket prices increase

Here we go again. The holidays are coming and flight ticket prices start to rise again. Expensive fuel, inflation, personnel costs and aircraft maintenance. The explanations are always the same. But the number one reason is: algorithm. Demands for tickets grow at Easter (as at Christmas and summer) and the algorithm causes the numbers to skyrocket. We tried to buy a return ticket Milan-Palermo. If we leave on Good Friday and return on Easter Monday, it is impossible to spend less than 270 euros. But what if we could move the Easter holidays by a few days? Leaving the following Friday (April 5th) and returning on Monday (April 8th) we would arrive and return with 70 euros. There is a minimum difference of 200 euros. And while you do all the necessary research, a pop up clearly warns you: “Hurry, prices will rise soon!” The algorithm sees very well.

The analysis carried out by the Consumer Training and Research Center (Crc) together with Assoutenti speaks clearly. The study took into consideration a return flight departing from various Italian cities on Friday 29 March and returning on Tuesday 2 April. What emerged? For Catania the average expense is 365 euros starting from Turin, 319 euros from Verona, 144 from Rome. Shall we try Sardinia? It's not much better: Bologna-Alghero 334 euros, Verona-Cagliari 279 euros. Obviously you must then add the costs for hand luggage or for choosing a seat. And the price increases. Moving abroad is prohibitive. If you choose Amsterdam from Rome you need a minimum of 489 euros, if you fly from Milan to Berlin you need 455 euros. A classic Milan-Barcelona? From Good Friday to Easter Monday it is 254 euros. Exotic destinations are unattainable. From Saturday 30 March to Saturday 6 April 936 euros for the Maldives and 1,166 euros for the Seychelles.

In 2023, there was a 32% growth in flight prices on intra-European routes (Eurostat data) and in the first months of 2024, thanks to Easter in March, the race accelerated. The CEO of Easyjet justified the 31% increase in the average fare last year with the +71% increase in the price of oil. But even if expensive energy and inflation have played and play an important role, what dominates the market is, as always, the rule of supply and demand. Airlines use algorithm that fluctuates prices in order to maximize profits. And so for Easter the goal is: full planes with high prices. The law of supply and demand is natural and lawful. But it becomes a problem if a 70 euro flight to Palermo reaches 270 in the space of a handful of days. A problem for citizens who want to travel for holidays and cannot afford it and, in turn, a serious problem for the tourism system.