The ticket prices have risen 88% in the last 12 months. Experts say the 41% drop in travel during the pandemic and the increased price of jet fuel explain the increase.
After two pandemic years, tourism is recovering in Brazil, but the high price of airline tickets is still a barrier for many people.
According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), airline tickets have increased 88% in the last 12 months. The consumer finds it difficult to embark on these trips.
“A plane ticket from São Paulo to Rio costs R$1,800 (US$ 343), it’s absurd”, complains engineer José Gentil do Amaral Sampaio.
“Between São Paulo and Brasilia, the average is R$800 (US$ 152), one way. One way. It is absurd. I used to pay this amount as a round trip before,” says actress Guta Moura.
According to experts, travel, which fell 41% during the pandemic, and the high price of jet fuel caused the increase in airfare prices.
“Airlines were almost catching up to pre-pandemic levels, but war broke out in Ukraine and the growth stopped. Of course, the airlines are trying to solve that somehow, perhaps taking advantage of the price increase. The reflection of fuel’s current price is inevitable, they cannot work magic,” says Marcus Quintella, director of FGV Transportes.
Those who need to make a trip and cannot afford a plane ticket have to find a solution. And buses have been one answer.
“After two years of standstill, there has been an exceptionally substantial increase in car travel in nearby regions and places and, at the same time, a reorganisation of the tourism production chain. In aviation and in the hotel sector,” points out Jeanine Pires, vice-president of Oner Travel.
A tour operator takes passengers anywhere in the world. To make life easier for those who like or need to travel, the opportunities to pay for tickets in instalments have increased, among other options for those who cannot fly.
“Instalments in 24 times make it much easier for customers to pay, because they can choose the destination and pay the instalment without compromising their budget. There has also been a big boost in road trips, an increase of approximately 200% compared to 2019”, explains Gabriele Melo, tour agency manager.
According to a survey by the Ministry of Tourism and the IBGE, in 2021 Brazilians made 12.3 million trips, 99.3% within the country. Total spending on overnight domestic travel amounted to R$9.8 billion (US$ 1.86 billion). Approximately 57.2% of trips in 2021 were made by private or corporate car, 12.5% by bus and 10.2% by plane.
In leisure travel in 2021, sun and beach destinations lost predominance to natural destinations, ecotourism or adventure, a post-pandemic trend. Last year, 48.7% of these trips went to sun and beach destinations, while in 2020 it was 55.6%. In relation to nature tourism in 2021, this represented 25.6% of travelers - higher than in 2020 (20.5%).