The September holidays are approaching, days that are presented as a new opportunity to continue with the recovery of the tourism sector because Uruguayans take the opportunity to travel. In fact, two weeks before Almost all the tickets have been sold. —in the order of three thousand, adding regular flights and special operations— that were enabled for dates in the holiday week environmentaccording to the e-commerce director of 5M Travel Group, Andrés Gil. This group brings together the agencies: Jetmar, Hiperviajes, Buemes, TocTocViajes and Tienda Viajes.
But for industry players this is not enough -although it meets its expectations in the current context-, because Airport connectivity continues to be lower than before the pandemic and directly impacts the level of agency sales. “60 or 65% of what was sold before the pandemic is being soldwhich corresponds to the total number of operations we have at the Montevideo airport”, said the director of HiperViajes, Fernando Riva.
the chosen destinations
5M Travel Group sold a number of tickets that is located —depending on the destination— between 15% and 50% below the holidays of September 2019.
Among the chosen destinations, the following stand out in long distance: Caribbean, United States and Europe. And regionally, Argentina and Brazil. “They are not far from the main industrial destinations, that is, the most sold in the year”, said Gil.
However this time there is a significant difference in the number of people traveling to the neighboring country —mainly to Bariloche, according to the director of BN Tours, Juan Barrio— for the exchange rate. This added to the appearance of some charters bound for Brazil that complement the lack of airport connectivity.
The times to travel
“More than 50% travel for a whole week’s stay,” Riva said.
To the Caribbean, the United States and Europe the Uruguayans reserve for the whole week of vacations or even more. According to Gil, Caribbean has an average stay of 10 days, USA —Based on Miami, which is one of the most chosen destinations— two weeks Y the old continent of three weeks.
Brazil, depending on the locality, you can also average a week’s stay. Meanwhile, Argentina attracts tourists who travel through three-day getaways in generalalthough there are also cases of trips for a week.
The price trend that characterized this year is maintained; Tickets they are between 30% and 50% more expensive than before the pandemic.
Gil pointed out that in Europe, the average rate is in the order of US$ 1,400 (22% more than in 2019). In the Caribbean, US$1,100 (29% more than in the pre-pandemic). In Brazil US$ 650 (40% above 2019)though it is expected that prices will begin to fall pbecause the supply is beginning to recover, according to experts
For his part, Barrio emphasized the duality of demand-supply. He said, for example, that They started with very reasonable prices for the Caribbean and the United States and as the quotas were exhausted, the costs began to increase. As for the tickets to go to Europe, he maintained that the costs are still higher than normal.
The actors of the sector who spoke with Coffee & Business agreed that the days before the holidays the consultations increased. They hope to finish selling the few places that remain with last-minute clients, who are mainly on charters to Brazil: Cabo Frio, Recife and Rio de Janeiro.
In addition, the first consultations focused on the summer season are already visible.
To conclude, they said that during these vacations, —within the supply that is still limited in Uruguay— it did meet their expectations. “We did not expect greater connectivity, unfortunately,” said Riva and concluded: “We don’t expect it to grow to pre-pandemic levels until the end of 2024.“