Inside an Airbus A319 economy class cabin. This image shows the overhead bins, PSUs and the very tops of the seats. Airbus is seeking to advance various sustainable cabin initiatives. Flam testing is required of all aircraft interiors.

Press Release: Cirium data show increases in economy airfares

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Press Release hub banner blue with title in red white and blueCirium, the leading aviation analytics company, analysed airfare trends for 2023, using Cirium FM Traffic. Economy airfare has generally increased since 2023 in North America  and Europe, but lower than the U.S. inflation rate.  

“While airfare has risen in nominal terms in U.S. and Europe, consumers will appreciate that the  increases are less than other consumables,” said Jeremy Bowen, CEO of Cirium. “Cirium’s data teams  will continue to monitor the impact on fares of increased capacity in the market, despite challenges  related to the availability of aircraft, be it due to groundings, engine issues, or supply chain  constraints.”  

Cirium analysed airfare for the U.S. domestic market (including 13 U.S. airlines), intra-European travel,  and the Transatlantic market. The data is non-directionally averaged, in U.S. dollars, not including taxes  and fees. Unless otherwise noted, the fares indicated are for economy class.  

U.S. Domestic Airfare 

The average U.S. domestic airfare by the 13 airlines was $179.25 in 2023, an increase of 9% since the  2019 average of $164.63. Notably, Cirium also analyzed changes in the U.S. Consumer Price Index from  data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, where the inflation rate between 2019 and 2023 was  19%. Accordingly, airfare has risen less than other consumables — 10% lower in real terms. 

Beginning in August 2023, airfare decreased by approximately 4% compared to the equivalent months in 2022. Fares in December 2023 were 9% lower than December 2022. The U.S. domestic airfare data includes Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, Avelo Airlines, Breeze Airways, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines,  and United Airlines. 

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Intra-European Airfare 

Fares for flights within Europe are 8% higher than in 2022 and 12% higher than in 2019. The average  airfare in Europe in 2023 was $104.58 (approximately €96) compared to $93.17 (approximately €85.70)—in each case excluding taxes and fees. 

Transatlantic Airfare 

The average transatlantic economy fare in 2023 was $435.17, compared to $410.75 in 2022 and  $381.08 in 2019. This is an increase of 14% in 2023 compared to 2019. However, Cirium data indicates

that transatlantic business class airfare is 3% lower compared to 2019, with December 2023 business  class fares 7% lower compared to December 2019. The average business class fare in 2023 was $1,845.  

Increase in Transatlantic Capacity  

Airlines increased capacity in 2023 compared to 2022 and are poised to do the same for summer 2024,  according to Cirium Diio Mi schedule data. The transatlantic carriers increased seats flown by 18% in  2023 compared to 2022. And, in the peak summer month of July 2024, the transatlantic carriers will fly  almost 375,000 more seats compared to July 2023, with Air France, Delta Air Lines, and Lufthansa  among the carriers increasing capacity. This action may reduce airfare on select routes.  

About Cirium 

Cirium is the world’s most trusted source of aviation analytics. Through powerful data and analytics,  coupled with decades of industry experience, Cirium is enabling airlines, airports, travel companies,  aircraft manufacturers, and financial institutions, amongst others, to make intelligent and informed  decisions that improve operations, grow revenues, and enhance customer experiences. 

Cirium is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for  professional and business customers. The shares of RELX PLC are traded on the London, Amsterdam  and New York Stock Exchanges using the following ticker symbols: London: REL; Amsterdam: REN; New  York: RELX. 

Featured image credited to Mary Kirby