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‘At least I will get a few more stamps in my passport now’
This was the first statement that I posted on social media when I heard the news that Britain would be leaving the European Union. Whilst I understand that some people may not be happy with the result and that many are concerned with uncertain prospects for the country as a result of the referendum, it’s time to accept it and move on. This result means many different things to many different people- the fisherman might be happy, whilst the bankers are not, those north of the boarder might want to leave the UK and Londoners may have to deal with financial implications of a drop in property prices. But what does this mean for the travel and tourism industry?
Holidays are inevitably on the minds of many Brits right now, not only as a means to de-stress after all the referendum hype, but also because of the dreadful weather we have had recently and the approaching school holidays. I expect not much will change this holiday season (apart from a little resentment towards us perhaps- I can’t help but think that all of the EU hate us now!), but what will our summer holidays be like next year and the year after?
Deregulation of the aviation industry saw a huge rise low cost carriers, who expanded across Europe. This was great news for travellers! Before the average person took maybe one holiday a year, but with the growth of low-cost travel they could now afford a weekend break in addition to their two weeks in the Costas. Those who couldn’t afford to travel before were now welcomed in to the holiday market with open arms. Budget travellers, backpackers and students could now hop on flights as easier as taking the bus. But will this stop?
My answer is no.
To support this view, I did a little test. I opened the Skyscanner app on my phone and searched for a flight to Norway. I could fly from as little as £16. Is this not proof enough? Ryan Air will undoubtedly be unhappy about this referendum result because Michael O’Leary is one of tightest men on earth (can you tell I’m not a huge fan?), but seriously they are so spread out across Europe with 84 different basis that I’m sure they can avoid too much of a negative impact on Michael’s profits, and subsequently the prices we pay. And what about the fact that London is a world leading hub? Seriously, airlines would be crazy to stop flying here… And lastly, is the price gap between budget and scheduled airlines really all that big after you take in to consideration the costs of travel to/from secondary airports, pay a small fortune for your baggage and all the other little ‘add ons’?