Travel increase creates fare hike, passport delays still an issue

Problem Solvers

DENVER (KDVR) — Pandemic travel is getting ready to shift to a faster pace according to industry experts.

The Colorado American Automobile Association reports travel is up 75% from 2019 after losses during the pandemic. Many major airlines will meet increased demand by adding thousands of flights available across the nation between now and the holiday season.

Skyler McKinley of AAA of Colorado told the Problem Solvers, “as the pandemic wears on folks’ concerns about the pandemic wear off, that’s why we tend to see airlines of every stripe adding flights.”

FOX31 spoke with travelers at Denver International Airport who said it’s good to see things bustling again.

“I love walking in there and seeing the airport is full and everybody working again,” one passenger arriving from New Orleans said.

While the pandemic recovery provides a boost for millions of travel industry employees, passengers should be prepared for fare increases and cancellations.

“Many of the airlines said early on ‘we’re going to be totally flexible with our cancellation policies’ … they probably have an economic interest to get you on those flights,” McKinley said. 

Travel experts said it is important to be aware of COVID-19 travel guidelines before leaving for the airport and at your destination. McKinley said whether you travel by plane, bus or take a road trip, public health guidelines remain in place. Pack masks, carry vaccination records and sanitizing products.

“Preventing the spread is the name of the game through at least January of 2022,” McKinley said.

Passport delays are still a problem, so applying or renewing for 2022 trips should be done as soon as possible.

AAA of Colorado reports travel to Colorado is up 19% with more people coming from across the world to enjoy what the state has to offer.

One stranded airline passenger who had a Las Vegas flight canceled told FOX31, “I didn’t get to make it to Vegas so now I’m just trying to make it a romantic weekend with my girlfriend in Colorado.”

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