Tour operators are concerned-there are not enough charters
After Kuban airlines went bankrupt at the end of 2012, and Red Wings suspended its operator certificate, there was a shortage of aircraft on the Russian Charter market.
Representatives of travel companies are anxiously predicting a rise in the cost of tickets and a real shaft of delays in Charter flights.
According to estimates of air brokers and ticket agencies, the Charter market in Russia currently lacks at least 25 aircraft, which is about 15% of the total number of aircraft used for Charter programs.At the same time, the total volume of passenger air traffic continues to grow, and in the First quarter of this year, according to the Federal air transport Agency, it increased by 17.7%.
The shortage of aircraft has already led to massive delays in departures from Moscow airports during the may holidays. The Kolavia airline, which has been using the TUI brand for about a year, even set a kind of record by compacting the flight schedule. Its planes began operating three Charter flights a day on the eve of the may holidays instead of the usual two. On may 1, due to technical problems, the carrier delayed flights from Domodedovo to Antalya and Sharm El-Sheikh for five or more hours. Kolavia could not follow the schedule for the next two days. There were delays for other airlines — Tatarstan, Vim-Avia, and Ural airlines.
Due to the shortage of aircraft, airlines are forced to change the time of departure — tour packages are increasingly equipped with inconvenient morning flights. According to tour operators, the incidents of the may holidays are just the beginning. The shortage of aircraft will be felt most acutely in June, with the start of the mass holiday season.
So far, the shortage of aircraft has not greatly affected the cost of tickets and now it is still easy to buy cheap tickets. For popular European resorts, the average rate is about €500, which is 10% more than last year. Perhaps the market simply did not have time to react to the departure of large private carriers. In this case, a significant increase in price, up to 20%, can be expected in the next winter season.
However, it is possible that the deficit will be eliminated by the next summer season. Some airlines, such as Aeroflot, Transaero, and UTair, are already actively negotiating the purchase of medium-haul air equipment. Ural airlines intends to buy up to 17 Airbus 320 aircraft for tourist transportation. The company now owns four A320s, with the major tour operator Coral being the partial owner as well as the main customer. However, it is unlikely to be possible to complete the negotiations and implement the projects in full this season.