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International airfares jump 47%: Here are the routes to avoid

Passengers departing Sydney airport to London as airfares increase.
Air travel could put more strain on personal budgets after a sharp increase in international and domestic airfares. (Source: Getty)

The cost of international airfares from Australia has surged between May and July this year, according to new data.

Travel search engine KAYAK revealed the average return economy international flight price in Australia - based on flight searches between July 1 and July 18 - was approximately $1,761, an increase of about 14 per cent compared to the same period in May.

Meanwhile, the average return economy domestic flight price in Australia - based on searches in July - climbed to $406, an increase of about 21 per cent compared to the same period in May.

10 biggest price jumps

Here are the international routes that have experienced the biggest price increases:

  1. Sydney to Copenhagen (Denmark) - approximately 47 per cent

  2. Perth to Johannesburg (South Africa) - approximately 44 per cent

  3. Melbourne to Denpasar (Bali) - approximately 33 per cent

  4. Sydney to Athens (Greece) - approximately 32 per cent

  5. Melbourne to Bangkok (Thailand) - approximately 32 per cent

  6. Sydney to Honolulu (Hawaii) - approximately 32 per cent

  7. Melbourne to Honolulu - approximately 31 per cent

  8. Perth to Denpasar - approximately 29 per cent

  9. Sydney to Istanbul (Türkiye/Turkey) - approximately 29 per cent

  10. Brisbane to Denpasar - approximately 28 per cent

Bali airfares surging

When it comes to the most popular travel destinations for Aussies, Bali is number one.

Here are the average return economy flight prices between Australian cities and Bali in July compared to May:

  • Sydney to Denpasar - approximately $967, a 26 per cent increase

  • Melbourne and Denpasar - approximately $850, a 33 per cent increase

  • Brisbane and Denpasar - approximately $753, a 28 per cent increase

Australian passports on world map.
Webjet found 64 per cent of Australian adults intended to travel overseas in the next six months. (Source: Getty)

London calling?

Europe is the second-most-popular travel destination for Aussies, with London often the first stop.

Here are the average return economy flight prices between Australian cities and London in July 2022 compared to May 2022:

  • Sydney to London - approximately $2,534, a 10 per cent increase

  • Melbourne to London - approximately $2,468, a 19 per cent increase

  • Brisbane to London -approximately $2,712, a 22 per cent increase

Decreasing airfares

Not all international flights are attracting a significant price increase.

The following routes experienced either a decrease or minimal price increase in July compared to May:

  • Melbourne to Auckland - 6 per cent decrease

  • Brisbane to Nadi - 4 per cent decrease

  • Melbourne to Singapore - 1 per cent decrease

  • Sydney to Auckland - 1 per cent increase

  • Sydney to Queenstown - 2 per cent increase

How to beat the price hikes

Elia San Martin, KAYAK vice-president and general manager APAC, advised being flexible with your dates and flight times to maximise your travel savings in 2022.

The most affordable month to book an international flight for the rest of 2022 is October, which is around 21 per cent cheaper than the rest of the year.

The most affordable month to book a domestic flight this year is in November, which is around 22 per cent less than the 2022 average.

"One piece of advice to Aussies looking for a great deal is to be flexible with your dates, and consider choosing a mid-week or off-peak flight time," San Martin said.

"Travellers should also consider booking two one-way flights with different airlines to save money on return flights."

Tourists sit at tables and chairs on a beach in Bali.
Bali remains the number one destination for Aussie travellers. (Source: Getty)

If you were looking to book a trip without breaking the bank, San Martin offered the following tips:

  • Consider booking a hacker fare: Hacker fares let travellers combine two one-way tickets on different airlines when it can save them money over a traditional round-trip.

  • Get flexible if you can be, and choose "flexible" filters. If your travel dates aren't set in stone, and you have a little wiggle room available, chances are you can save some cash booking within three days - before or after - of your desired date range.

  • Choose your dates wisely: Flying out and returning midweek vs the weekend can be cheaper on short-haul and longer-haul trips. It is a similar story for shorter breaks. Travelling on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday generally may be a lot more affordable than at other times of the week. Percentages are on average and prices may vary with time.

  • Set a price alert: Price alerts help travellers save money by alerting them when prices change for a flight or hotel they want. If a flight you're eyeing drops in price, an alert will help you lock in that new price, instantly saving you both time and money.

Post-pandemic travel bug catching on

As an increasing number of countries relax their pandemic travel restrictions, jet-setter wanderlust has kicked in big time.

Online travel service Webjet recently revealed the travel industry would be getting a post-pandemic boost as the desire to travel grew.

Mental health was a top post-pandemic priority, with 35 per cent of people using travel to take a much-needed break, the company said, following research conducted among 5,000 adults Australia-wide in July.

Webjet also uncovered the following:

  • Aussies are still looking locally: 62 per cent of people have gone on domestic trips in the past six months and 89 per cent of Aussies plan on travelling domestically by the end of the year.

  • Hesitancy to travel overseas is at an all-time low, with 71 per cent of Aussies now comfortable travelling internationally and 64 per cent intending to travel overseas in the next six months.

  • COVID has impacted travel priorities; 20 per cent of post-pandemic travellers now value flexibility when booking flights and accommodation.

  • Travel insurance a high priority: While 59 per cent have travelled without insurance in the past, 58 per cent wouldn't travel without insurance in the future, showing the increased shift in caution since pre-COVID, particularly in light of recent press about flight cancellations and lost baggage.

  • Early bookings: Aussies are making plans to tick off their pandemic travel bucket lists; 36 per cent are planning trips six months in advance.

  • Spontaneous holiday planning is on the rise, with 46 per cent of Aussies planning trips only a few months in advance.

Aussie travel goals revealed

In terms of where Aussies were travelling to, Webjet's survey found the following:

  • Going coastal: Beach getaways continued to be top of mind for holidays (24 per cent).

  • Most popular destinations: Bali, Europe and New Zealand topped the list for most popular destinations, while those seeking adventures closer to home were looking to Queensland and Tasmania for a domestic getaway.

  • Japan still popular: The Asian country ranked fourth on the list, although border restrictions were yet to be eased for individual travellers.

  • Luxury in mind: Aussies were looking to splurge on more luxury accommodation, with the preference to book hotels (40 per cent) and resort (27 per cent) stays ranking above apartments, holiday rentals, B&Bs and cabins.

  • Family time: Spending quality time with loved ones was top of mind after pandemic isolation. Family holidays were the top reason for travel plans (28 per cent).

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