Russian airlines raise ticket prices at a record pace in 14 years

Airline prices in Russia will rise in 2022 by a record 8-14% over the past 14 years, writes Izvestia, citing sources in three major booking services and Rosstat.

If in December 2021 the average cost of an air ticket per 1 thousand kilometers was 5482.2 rubles, then in December 2022 it was 6096.9 rubles, Rosstat data show. Thus, an increase of 11% is recorded in the official figures, which is 0.9 PPP. below official inflation.

The last time ticket prices were raised was only in 2008, when their prices increased by an average of 34%.

The Federal Antimonopoly Service disagrees and states that in 2022 air ticket prices are set to drop by 13-16% compared to 2021. “According to data for January-November, in 2022 the weighted average cost of transporting a passenger in an economy class cabin on domestic lines with a length of 1 thousand km was 4,700 rubles (in 2021 – 5,600, in 2020 – 4,900). )”, – noted in the FAS.

The department emphasized that they take into account all air tickets, including those sold at discounted fares, without baggage, as well as tickets sold with various discounts. The head of the Ministry of Transport, Vitaly Saveliev, also referred to the FAS at the end of November, talking about a decrease in airfares by 6.5% compared to the level of 2019. But now the Transport Ministry has refused to comment.

Aeroflot confirmed an increase in prices for economy class transportation in 2022, but stressed that it was only 1.3%. At the same time, transport charges have decreased in some areas. For example, on flights from Moscow to St. Petersburg, Samara, Saratov, Krasnoyarsk, Omsk and Ufa – from minus 2% to minus 21.4%.

Determining the dynamics of airfare is not an easy task, explained Alexander Gushchin, director of the corporate rating group of the ACRA analytical agency. “First, the composition of transport along routes may change from cheaper to more expensive directions and vice versa. Second, ticket sales may be affected by changes in depth. Accounting for these and many other factors separately There could be different results for different departments,” experts say, adding that it is difficult to assess whose calculations are closer to the truth.

Industry experts say airfare prices will continue to rise in 2023. Gushchin predicted, “The average cost increase in 2023 could be slightly higher than the overall rate of inflation in the economy.” According to him, the hike in prices will lead to hike in fuel prices, rising interest rates and a difficult situation with airlines’ fleets.

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