As more and more people get vaccinated for COVID-19, travel is expected to dramatically increase this summer, but you should not expect air travel to return to pre-pandemic norms yet.
Planes will be fuller and there will be more flights
In the past, year flights and the number of passengers on planes might have been lower than normal, but many airlines are expected to do away with keeping middle seats open and the airfare app Hopper reports a 60 percent increase in searches for summer travel since last month. The experts warn the days of empty planes is likely over.
Expect the cost of airfare to increase
The NYT reports with more people traveling, airlines will increase the cost of tickets, depending on the destination. They note tickets to Hawaii are likely to see a price hike, but flights to somewhere like Idaho will still be cheap.
The return of cancellation fees
During the pandemic, many airlines instituted very flexible cancelation policies, but travel experts warn by the summer, canceling a trip will likely cost you. Also, the experts urge travelers who were issued a voucher for a future flight to check when it expires as most are set to expire in 2021 or 2022.
Food and drink in the air is expected to return
Many airlines got rid of food service during the first year of the pandemic, but having a snack or drink mid-air will likely return for many flights. The travel experts note passengers, for the time being, will still be required to wear their masks when not eating or drinking.
More domestic destinations
Due to many international travel destinations still being off-limits, airlines have reportedly added new domestic routes from major travel hubs to locations like Hawaii, Colorado, Florida, Wyoming, Montana, South Dakota, and Oregon.
The Doctors note the CDC is currently asking people to limit non-essential travel, warning, "Travel increases your chance of spreading and getting COVID-19. Delay travel and stay home to protect yourself and others from COVID-19, even if you are vaccinated."