Expensive prices on summer holidays

It will be a drain again. Summer arrives and prices, as always, soar. In August +20% at least. With air flights rising by as much as 68% for some routes, despite the drop in fuel prices. First Covid, then high energy prices, inflation… the fact is that every year we spend more and more on holidays.

A family of two adults and two children who books a 7-day holiday around August 15th in Sardinia today, arriving in Olbia, spends almost 3100 euros, compared to 2700 euros last year. The plane is the most influential item. And it's not much better if you choose the ferry. Today 3400 euros are needed, compared to 2600 in 2023. The increases, according to the Assoutenti-Consumption Research and Training Center (Crc) survey, concern everything: from travel (planes and ferries) to accommodation facilities, up to umbrellas and restaurants .

Let's start with the planes. “Our family” of four people spends almost a thousand euros to fly from Milan to Brindisi in August (+15% compared to 2023), for Olbia the euros are 924. From Rome to Cagliari the increase is close to 20% (686 euros on minimum price), which is the average increase for summer 2024. Taking a flight abroad sees increases of up to 60%. The Rome-Tenerife flight costs over 650 euros per person (+30% compared to 2023), for Sharm el-Sheikh the increase is 63%, almost a thousand euros per passenger are needed. From Rome to the Maldives you pay 44.2% more and there is an increase of +67% for the Milan-Bodrum flight (in Turkey). All this while in May there was an 11% drop in the price of fuel. So? Summer demand drove up flight tickets and algorithms allowed airlines to “adjust” prices. The Antitrust has launched an investigation against Ryanair precisely to ascertain the use of the algorithm which has led to an almost doubling of prices in recent years, especially towards Sicily and Sardinia.

It's better if you have to take a ferry to go on holiday. But here too there are price increases. On average the increase is 6.3% compared to last year. Again, “our family”, buying a ticket today (with car in tow), spends 1,274 euros for the Genoa-Porto Torres route (+1.8% on 2023), 1,094 euros for the Livorno-Porto Torres route, 1,274 euros for the return ticket. Olbia (+6.2%), 669 euros for the Naples-Palermo (+7.2%), 823 euros to travel from Civitavecchia to Porto Torres (+10.2%).

Once you arrive at your destination, here is the hotel. For a three-star hotel or equivalent category (meals excluded) for seven nights (10-17 August) “our family” can spend from a minimum of 872 euros if it goes to Bibione to a maximum of 3500 euros if it chooses Porto Cervo. The average increase for seaside locations is 19.6%. Almost 2,600 euros are needed in Baja Sardinia, around 2,200 euros in Amalfi, above two thousand euros also in Marina di Pietrasanta. The cheapest are Rapallo (909 euros) and Grado (967 euros). Sardinia is the destination with the highest percentage increases on an annual basis, followed by Senigallia, Milano Marittima and Anzio.
The high summer price also affects restaurants and beach establishments. For meals in holiday resorts and beaches, prices increase by 3.5%. The rates for umbrellas, sunbeds, deckchairs, cabins and for seasonal passes mark a +5% compared to 2023. On average they cost between 30 and 35 euros per day, but it depends on the destination. The cheapest is Romagna, where an average of 25 euros per day is needed, the most expensive is Sardinia where on some beaches it even exceeds 120 euros. In the middle is Salento which reaches 90 euros in some places.

In the end, the math speaks clearly: families will have to shell out between 15% and 20% more for a week's holiday in August.