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Air travel to get more expensive with surging oil prices: IATA

The escalating cost of oil globally is set to result in more expensive air tickets in the coming days, Chief of The International Air Transport Association (IATA) Willie Walsh has said. .

Oil is the single most expensive cost for an airline, Walsh said while speaking to BBC Sunday Morning programme.
Flying will be more expensive for consumers, “without doubt”, he said.

Walsh, the Director General of IATA said that it’s inevitable that high oil prices will be passed on to the consumers in higher ticket prices.
Surging oil and gas prices, exacerbated by Russia’s military offensive in Ukraine leading to rerouting of airplanes leading to extra fuel burn and increased demand from economies recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, have fed into rising global inflation.

Brent, the benchmark for more than two thirds of the world’s crude, rose to a notch under USD 140 a barrel in March. It has given up some gains since then, but is still trading around the USD 105 mark.

Inflation is this year forecast to reach 5.7 per cent in advanced economies and 8.7 per cent in emerging markets and developing economies, according to the International Monetary Fund.

Among the many negative effects of an escalation of the Russia-Ukraine war on aviation, rising fuel costs and dampened demand owing to lowered consumer sentiment would be paramount, IATA said during its annual general meeting in Doha last month.

Holidaymakers need to be prepared for the cost of flights to go up, Mr Walsh told the BBC.

Many of the issues affecting airlines and airports were caused by staffing problems in the wake of Covid. However, Walsh said he had “no regrets” about making deep cuts to British Airways’ headcount during the pandemic, when he was running the airline.

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