Summer travel plans have been met with sky-high prices that may be out of reach for some. However, resourceful travelers who can embrace flexibility are finding ways to enjoy a vacation and stay within budget.
Chelsea Hampshaw was worried that the surge in summer travel to Europe would make her family’s annual trip to London unaffordable. Then she spotted a deal.
“I was searching. We just weren’t gonna be able to go this year, flights were so expensive and so sparse. And so as soon as this popped up, it was like ‘Oh, I guess we can make this happen this year,'” Hampshaw said.
While it required a seven-hour drive from South Carolina to Washington’s Dulles Airport, a flight on a lesser-known airline and arrival at an airport 30 miles outside London, the family of six managed to save around $6,000.
“Pretty big difference,” Hampshaw said.
Airlines are creating some new options to help make European trips more affordable for their passengers.
Norse Atlantic Airways, a Norwegian low-cost carrier, just announced service from Washington in May. The airline offers both premium and economy class, allowing travelers to choose the price point and level of comfort and amenities they prefer.
Its first flight to London’s Gatwick Airport sold out, said Norse Atlantic CEO Bjorn Larsen.
Earlier this year, JetBlue announced that direct flights from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport to Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris would begin on June 29.
Overall, airfares to Europe are currently at a six-year high, averaging about $1,200 per person, according to Hopper, a travel website.
Hotel prices are also up, with a 37% increase compared to last year, especially in popular destinations like Rome and Madrid.
But despite the inflationary pressures affecting travel plans for many, AAA still anticipated a summer