We recently ran a poll to see if the coronavirus pandemic would change upcoming travel plans, and how things have changed so quickly in a short amount of time! Now that everyone, the travel industry and travelers alike, are grounded for the time being, perhaps the better question may be what everyone is planning for later down the road.
Though at least 27 airlines worldwide have suspended operations—plan on the majority being out of commission for at least through April—it is still possible to book travel for the rest of the year on a few of them.
Perhaps what might make this an opportune time is that airlines are currently suspending change and cancellation fees for any new travel in an attempt to incentivize people to hit the road.
Prices also have hit rock bottom. (One Mile at a Time is reporting fares as low as $16 roundtrip!)
For example, a nonstop New York to Los Angeles flight (EWR-LAX) from May 2 to May 9 now clocks in at $158 roundtrip in United basic economy. American is offering $176 for similar flights, bottoming out at $137 for connecting.
Typically, a “fantastic deal” for this route would price around $200-250.
(Here’s a weird realization: It doesn’t matter what dates you pick! Why not lock in the best price available and then change it? Fare differences may still apply. #hackthesystem)
The downside is obviously the uncertain climate, and whether a few of these airlines will be able to stay in business or operate in the near future. So tell us, will you buy flights for future travel now?
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