People are being urged to travel off-peak to avoid major holiday price increases.
It comes as new figures show holidays in the Canaries, Portugal and Spain are significantly more expensive this summer, when compared to pre-pandemic prices.
The Irish Travel Agents Association (ITAA) reports that the average price for a holiday to Lanzarote was €746 in 2019 – but that's now risen to €831.
Meanwhile, holidays in the Algarve in Portugal this July and August are 16% more expensive this year than they were before the pandemic.
The figures, published in The Irish Independent, are based on a seven-night stay.
On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, ITAA President Paul Hackett said the only way to avoid the increases is to travel off-peak.
“It is a case of pent-up demand and what we have to look at is, when is this price increase most pronounced? It is most pronounced in July and August when demand is strongest for families to travel because the schools are on holidays.
“It is a case of supply and demand. We have pent-up demand. People haven’t been on holidays for years, people have money and the airlines are looking to recoup some of the money they have lost over the last number of years.
“It’s not just Ireland where we are seeing these price increases. All of the European destinations are seeing similar price increases.
“The way to avoid them is to not travel during the months of July and August – travel off-peak and get a much better deal.
Mr Hackett admitted that off-peak travel is not an option for many families but insisted there is “exceptional” value available for those who can do it.
He said he does not believe holiday operators are ‘price gouging’ and insisted holidays at home can still be more expensive than travelling abroad.
“Once it is off-peak, the value is exceptional – across sun, city and all of the destinations,there are no major price increases,” he said.
“What we also have to recognise is that the prices for 2022 are being compared back to 2019 so that is three years of a price difference.
“We have higher fuel costs and that is a factor for the airlines so there are costs factors coming in here for travel just like there is for everything else.”
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