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Last minute flight prices up as airlines chaos takes its toll

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
Following Ryanair’s cancelled flights and the collapse of Monarch, holidaymakers have been dealt another blow with price rises on popular European routes.

Brits have seen flight prices to popular European destinations rise by 23% in October, according to analysis by Skyscanner.

It suggested that the recent turmoil of Ryanair’s flight cancellations and Monarch going bust, may have contributed to the rise, by taking supply out of the market.

The travel search company revealed that average flight prices to Malaga for bookings made between 25 August to 11 September stood at £110, but between 15 September and 2 October, the price had risen to £142.

Similarly, flight prices to Alicante rose from £118 to £150 during the same period while flights to Barcelona increased from £91 to £106.

However, the data showed that the price increases start to trail off for coming month and by February, European prices do start to fall back to seasonal norms.

Skyscanner also reported an 86% increase in site bookings from the UK to Europe over the last two weeks.

Hayley Shearer, growth manager at Skyscanner, said: “This spike in traffic is likely to be due to travellers seeking alternative flights.

“Flight prices can rise for a number of reasons; this recent increase could be attributed to last minute bookings and the demand/supply model that most industries works to.  When drilling down further on a selection of Brits’ most popular European destinations since the significant aviation changes came into effect a couple of weeks ago, we can see that whilst most destinations in Europe have seen an increase in their average flight price for immediate travel, most return to normal or even see prices drop for travel in January and February.”

Great deals to be had

Shearer explained there are still some great deals to be had for people who are savvy with their travel booking. Here are Skyscanner’s travel hacks to help get the best deal:

Flexibility: be flexible on the date of travel and consider travelling on a weekday rather than the weekend –  you might find it’s significantly cheaper to travel a day before or a day after your original departure dates

Mix and match: fares don’t have to be booked as returns, instead you can save money by flying out with one airline and back with another

Nearby airports: search to see if a short drive, bus or train journey to another airport could save you pounds

Monitor prices: the best way of getting a good fare is to keep track of the prices by setting up a price alert so that you are notified when prices rise or fall on a specific route.

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