Airfare to Asian cities on the rise after airspace closures
Russia closing its airspace to European airlines will likely result in more expensive flight tickets to Asian cities, experts told BNR. European airlines can no longer fly over Russia, so they'll have to divert to the southern, longer route. Their Asian competitors can still fly over Russia and will, therefore, likely not have to increase their ticket prices, according to the broadcaster.
The European Union closed its airspace to Russia over the weekend. Russia retaliated and closed its airspace to European airlines, which will now have to use the longer route. That leads to more fuel consumption, longer crew times, and higher maintenance costs, Floris de Haan, senior researcher in aviation economics at Erasmus UPT, said to the broadcaster.
De Haan expects that airlines will pass the extra costs on to customers by hiking flight ticket prices if the situation continues for a long time. "Tickets for the coming weeks have already been booked, so the difference between the revenue and higher costs will have to be borne by the airlines." De Haan foresees a "competitive advantage" for Asian airlines, who can still fly the shorter and cheaper route.
Aviation economist Rogier Lieshout van Beelinging agrees. "If Asian airlines do not participate in the boycott of Russian airspace or are not excluded themselves, it will be cheaper to fly with them than with European airlines," he said to BNR. After all, Asian carriers also fly to and from Schiphol.
Aviation economist Eric Pels expects that airlines with close ties to the West, like South Korea, will also avoid Russian air space. "Consumers don't feel comfortable with the thought that they are flying over Russian territory."