Travel prices in Europe have fallen for the first time in 2022, according to the latest data from travel management company TravelPerk.

Research from TravelPerk shows that global travel prices, including flights, accommodation and rail, have fallen by 8 per cent during the final three months of the year, compared with the third quarter, which included the peak summer leisure travel months of July and August.

Flights to and from London saw the largest price falls of up to 38 per cent between the third and fourth quarters of the year. A drop in travel prices across Europe follows a trend already established in the US market during the summer.

TravelPerk said that most travel elements had seen a reduction in global prices in the final three months of 2022, with flights down by 7 per cent, hotels by 3 per cent and rail by 2 per cent. Only car rental bucked this trend, with prices rising by 6 per cent in Q4 compared with the previous quarter.

Although prices have dropped in the current quarter, travel is still costing 26 per cent more than a year ago and 20 per cent more than during the final quarter of 2019. Airfares are still 34 per cent higher than pre-Covid, although this is down from being 60 per cent more expensive in April and May 2022.

Data showed that European airfares have fallen by 11 per cent in Q4 compared with Q3, with prices in Spain dropping by 15 per cent and UK flights being 12 per cent cheaper. There were also significant drops in France (down 9 per cent) and Germany (- 8 per cent).

European accommodation prices similarly have fallen by 7 per cent compared with Q3, with the holiday hotspot of Spain seeing a 10 per cent quarter-on-quarter decline. The cities to see the steepest drops in hotel rates over this period include Edinburgh (down 24 per cent), Barcelona (-18 per cent), Dublin (-15 per cent) and Munich (-12% per cent). 

JC Taunay Bucalo, chief revenue officer at TravelPerk, said: “2022 has seen a huge recovery in travel, particularly business travel, as companies from across the world have finally been able to put Covid behind them. That surge in demand, combined with a variety of other external factors, led to significant inflation this year in the cost of flights, rail and accommodation. 

“Until now, any inflationary recovery had been limited to the US, but we are now seeing Europe catching up, with prices for flights and accommodation coming down across the continent. With prices remaining stable in the US following a fall last quarter, this adds up to a marked and very welcome cooling off after the summer peak.

“It’s clear that demand remains high among business travellers, despite the price increases, but we do expect to see changes in booking patterns as employers and individuals adapt.” 

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