Adobe Analytics: Consumers spent $1 billion less on domestic flights in April, and prices continue to rise

Credit: Adobe Stock / Victor

Adobe continues to track the airline industry’s recovery with new Adobe Analytics data for US domestic flight bookings online. Adobe provides the most comprehensive report of its kind, measuring direct consumer transactions from 6 of the top 10 US airlines and over 150 billion web visits.

Domestic flight bookings in April 2022 drove $7.8 billion in online spend, a 13% decline from the month prior ($8.8 billion in March 2022,), equivalent to over $1 billion less in consumer spend. Overall bookings are down by 17%.

Despite the month-over-month declines, demand remains above pre-pandemic levels. For April, online spend is up 23% compared to April 2019, and bookings are up by 5%. So far in 2022, consumers have spent a total of $28.8 billion online for domestic flights. This is more than double what was spent in the first four months of 2021 ($13.9 billion).

Prices remained elevated in April 2022, increasing 27% over 2019 levels and 8% month-over-month. This marks the third consecutive month where prices have risen over pre-pandemic/2019 levels (March 2022 was up 20%, and February 2022 was up 5%). This is in contrast to January 2022 when prices were 3% lower than 2019 levels.

Inflation in ticket prices continues to impact consumer purchasing power. Again, while online spend in April 2022 is up 23% from 2019, actual bookings are up by only 5%. The wide gap shows that consumers have been paying considerably more for the same amount of service.

“An uncertain economic environment is pushing some consumers to reorient their travel plans,” said Vivek Pandya, lead analyst with Adobe Digital Insights. “We see indications, however, that some have chosen to delay their travel plans rather than to cancel them outright. While bookings for Memorial Day are down, summer travel is above pre-pandemic levels.”

Domestic bookings for Memorial Day weekend (May 27-30) are down 13% compared to where they were at at this point in 2019, and online spend is down 12%. Domestic bookings for summer travel (June 2022 to August 2022), on the other hand, are up 2% compared to 2019, and spend is up by 3%.

Based on arrival sites, the top 10 domestic destinations (based on lift, not volume) for those traveling from May to June 2022 include:

Methodology: Adobe offers the most comprehensive set of insights of its kind, based on analysis through Adobe Analytics that covers over 150 billion visits to travel, leisure, and hospitality sites — measuring transactions from 6 of the top 10 US airlines (more than any other technology company).