Airline fares around the world are poised for “inevitable” increases as the travel industry braces for the effects of rising aviation fuel costs, the chief executive of Ireland’s national airline has warned.
Airline boss Lynne Embleton said fuel costs represent around 25-30% of the overall costs airlines face and while they may offset the impacts caused by sudden increases in oil prices By buying early, it’s only a matter of time before airfares have to go up. .
“When the price of fuel goes up, it’s inevitable that it will eventually be passed on to customers,” the Aer Lingus CEO told RTE.
“It doesn’t happen right away, but one would expect the industry to recoup those costs,” he added.
The Aer Lingus boss said passengers can still find low fares to destinations in the US and Europe, but that window will close shortly.
“Ultimately we see fuel costs need to be reflected in the price,” he added.
Both Ryanair and Aer Lingus have increased the number and frequency of flights out of Cork airport this summer as the travel industry looks to recover after two years of the pandemic.
And Aer Lingus CEO Embleton said the airline had not been hit by the same scale of staffing shortages and bottleneck issues that have caused major disruption around the world.
“We’re still flying the schedule that we set, we’re already at 85% of 2019 capacity and as you know we’re aiming to get to 90% at peak and we’re absolutely on track to do that.” she said.
“Globally you have seen the impact of supply chain shortages and issues with airport security at many airports around the world and we are not immune to that,” he added.
“We have recruited, we are satisfied with the number of people who want to join Aer Lingus, and we are growing very well,” he said.