The increase in prices next year is inevitable, but to a large extent their absolute values will depend on the volume of state support and the opening of new airports in the south and south-west of Russia.
“In 2023, there will still be an increase in air ticket prices, at least at the level of inflation,” Sergey Aleksandrovsky, CEO of the airline, said in an interview with RBC.
“Experts consider the expected price rise very likely. “Within the limits of inflation, a price rise is almost inevitable. But this is not critical. Prices will not double,” said Oleg Panteleev, executive director of the AviaPort agency.
According to him, prices are affected by the balance of supply and demand. If demand exceeds supply, prices inevitably rise. On foreign routes, the factors that will seriously affect the availability of such flights are not yet visible. In 2022 the number of planes flying abroad has increased. It can be assumed that on international lines the key factor that will affect prices will be the ratio of the ruble to the currency. The stronger the ruble, the more profitable the trip, says the expert.
Subsidizing transportation helps Russian airlines on domestic routes. “The destruction of the competitive environment will lead to the most serious increase in prices. If the airlines had not met the challenges of the sanctions and were unable to maintain the airworthiness of the aircraft, we would have faced a huge supply shortage and the prices have risen sharply. But this did not happen. In relation to long-haul aircraft. Therefore, for the moment, we can say with full confidence that airlines are coping with maintaining the airworthiness of the fleet. This makes it possible to avoid rising prices,” Panteleev notes.
Aircraft maintenance is very expensive, so next year the prices for air tickets will rise, says Ekaterina Fedyukovich, an expert at the Analytical Center of Synergy University. According to her, passenger traffic is likely to decrease in the near future, because the amount of demand is sensitive to changes in ticket prices. There is no limit to price increases, just as there is no limit to business class tickets, which are an order of magnitude higher than promotional tickets, she notes. But there will always be people willing to spend their money, exchanging it for movement speed. Therefore, passengers will not refuse to fly en masse, she believes.
Andrey Kotov, CEO of the Dr.JUNG agency, says that the financial burden on airlines is growing and the trend will not change in the future. The unstable situation of fuel prices and services at foreign airports will surely push prices up.
But the state is interested in maintaining air transport in its entirety, which means that aid and subsidies will continue. This, in turn, will make it possible to contain the increase in prices for passenger flights, notes Dmitry Tortev, a member of the expert council of the Committee for the Protection of Competition of the State Duma. “Since the Federal Air Transport Agency does not have the authority to control air ticket prices, in the event of an unreasonable increase, Russia’s FAS should be involved. Previously, airlines had already been advised to maintain fares At the price level of 2021, I think a similar appeal should be sent out to carriers next year, however, so far, we cannot expect any panicked rise in passenger activity, and fuel prices have stabilized Therefore, there are no objective reasons for airlines to price more than the rate of inflation,” Tortev notes.
Therefore, according to experts, price growth next year is inevitable. To a large extent, their absolute values will depend on the volume of state support and the opening of new airports in the south and south-west of Russia. By the way, as the Governor of the Stavropol Territory Vladimir Vladimirov recently stated, the Stavropol airport will be expanded in 2023.