News

US flight bookings at 70% of pre-pandemic levels

Flight bookings to the US stand at more than 70% of pre-pandemic levels, according to research from Forward Keys.

Research from the ticketing data company shows the bookings at that level by ‘mid-October’, before the latest confirmation of entry rules last night but after the US’ November 8 reopening date was confirmed and a September 20 White House announcement on which countries’ visitors would be allowed entry.

Forward Keys said the September 20 announcement “caused an immediate reaction”, with week-on-week bookings from the UK jumping 83% while those from Brazil jumped 71% and bookings from the EU 185%.

After the second announcement, on October 15, week-on-week bookings jumped by a further 15% from the UK, 26% from the EU and 100% from Brazil.

There are “two clear peaks” of travel date for bookings from those three markets, according to Forward Keys data.

The first was for travel immediately after the November 8 relaxation of restrictions, which accounts for 15% of bookings; and the second over the festive period with 16% of bookings during Christmas week and 14% the week before.

Juan Gómez, head of market intelligence at ForwardKeys, said: “This data yet again demonstrates the enormous pent-up demand for travel.

“Immediately people heard that they would be allowed to visit the USA again; they booked; and a substantial proportion booked to fly as soon as they could.

“It is also interesting to note that bookings climbed higher once a specific date was given. That is not entirely surprising for two reasons. First, the certainty of a specific date inspires confidence. Second, those wanting to travel before the end of November could not afford to make a commitment until they knew for sure that they could travel when they wanted to.

“I am optimistic that in the coming weeks, we will see a steep increase in bookings to the USA for the Christmas period.”

Share article

View Comments

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.