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Flight Centre - Corporate Traveller - logoIn an exhilarating turn of events, Australia’s aviation sector is witnessing a robust resurgence, with air travel capacities soaring to levels unseen since before the pandemic. This surge is accompanied by a significant dip in international airfares, catalyzing an unprecedented boom in business travel.

According to the latest figures released by Flight Centre Corporate’s FCM Travel and Corporate Traveller, global and domestic air travel capacities have fully recovered to pre-pandemic standards. Melissa Elf, Global COO of Flight Centre Corporate, confirms, “As of this month, we have surpassed the passenger seat capacity of the pre-pandemic era worldwide. This has opened up as many seats to passengers as before 2019.”

This recovery has led to a decrease in airfares, especially on international routes from Australia, with reductions reaching up to 25% on some key corridors. “The increase in capacity and ensuing competition among airlines are likely to sustain this downward trend in prices through the year,” Elf explains.

Industry analysts, including the Global Business Travel Association, project a 27% increase in business travel in Australia for 2023. The return on investment is compelling: For every dollar spent on business travel, companies are expected to see a return of $145 in sales.

Despite the overall upbeat trend, some regions still lag in restoring total air travel capacity. However, others have rebounded with vigour, notably Australia, where international capacity has nearly returned to complete at 95%. This figure is anticipated to climb to 98% in the coming month, with consistent levels expected over the following six months.

Cities like Perth and Sydney are leading the charge, with Perth’s international seat capacity now at 111% and Sydney close to 97%. This upswing is buoyed by recent capacity enhancements from major carriers, including Delta Airlines, Singapore Airlines, China Southern, and Jetstar.

Fare and capacity breakdown.

Fare and capacity breakdown.

Elf highlights the importance of partnering with a knowledgeable travel management company during these dynamic times. “A competent travel manager is crucial for navigating this complex landscape. They ensure that businesses not only find the best deals and routes but also maximize travel benefits and advise on optimal travel timings,” she states.

This rejuvenation of the air travel sector spells a windfall for business travel, with lower fares enabling more frequent and productive corporate trips. As companies leverage these opportunities, the broader economic implications are palpable, promising a ripple effect of growth and prosperity across industries.

The horizon for Australia’s business travel landscape looks exceptionally bright, heralding a period of sustained economic vitality spurred by strategic travel investments and an advantageous airfare environment.




Written by: Michelle Warner