Travel Takes a POUNDing



June 29, 2016
Britain’s vote last week to leave the EU has dominated the travel world, in addition to the globe.
Will England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland see an inpouring of tourists from the United States?
Will Britons cut back on traveling abroad because it’s more expensive?
Following Brexit, online travel portals reported a surge of visitors.
Kayak
said it saw a 54 percent increase in US searches checking fares to the
UK compared with other Fridays in the month of June, and search site
Travelzoo saw a 35.3 percent increase in travel searches from the US to
the UK from June 24 to June 27.

The end of cheap flights?

How will Brexit change air travel in Europe?
Low-cost carriers like Ryanair and EasyJet have taken full advantage of the EU’s Open Skies agreement, which has made flying around the continent cheap and convenient.   EasyJet may
be one of the most affected, as it’s based in England, but RyanAir,
based in Ireland, probably won’t, more than any other flying in and out
of the UK.

This permissive aviation framework was great
for airlines and passengers -promoting competition, lowering prices and
creating new demand. The deregulated skies have
genuinely democratized travel for Europeans.

Anyone who has booked a fare on an EU low-cost carrier, from say, Berlin to London, and paid about the same price as a takeout meal, can’t help but be amazed at the efficiency of the UK aviation market.

The
the social benefits with this freedom of movement can’t be
underestimated: affordable leisure breaks, financial opportunities for
businesses and improved family ties.

Photo: AFP DENIS CHARLET

It might never be that good again for UK-based airlines and their passengers.

What Will It Mean for Airline Passengers?

The Telegraph‘s perspective:

HIGHER AIRFARES
The huge success of the no-frills airlines and
the impact they have made on reducing fares and opening up new routes
was enabled by the EU’s removal of the old bi-lateral restrictions on
air service agreements and the introduction of more open competition on
routes between Union countries. Now that Britain is leaving the EU,
arrangements will have to be made for new air service agreements if
British airlines like easyJet, are to continue operate freely all over
the EU, and Irish airlines, like Ryanair, or German airlines like German
Wings, are to continue to fly in and out of the UK without
restrictions.
 

Whether the wide choice of routes and historically low fares we now
enjoy will continue will depend on the results of those negotiations.

LOWER COMPENSATION FOR DELAYED FLIGHTS

The
exceptionally high levels of compensation that passengers are entitled
to under the EU directive on flight delays and cancellations are
enshrined in UK law. No doubt British airlines will lobby hard to get
the protection watered down after we have left. Nevertheless flights in
and out of EU countries and on EU airlines will still be governed by the
directive, though you could have a much harder time claiming
compensation, and might have to go to court in another country to win
your case. However, the dire predictions that passengers might end up
with not only no compensation but that they could also lose their
entitlements to food and drink and overnight accommodation in the event
of long delays, seem to be an unlikely outcome to me.

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