Bloomberg Línea — The inauguration of Brazil’s President-elect Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva next Sunday helped to significantly increase the demand for flights to Brasilia on New Year’s Eve weekend.
The volume of searches for flights to the federal capital between December 30 (Friday) and January 2 (Monday) skyrocketed by around 1,600% in the combined volume of October and November compared to the same period in 2019, the last year of “normal” tourism without the impact of the pandemic.
Those who left to search for a ticket to Brasilia last minute will pay more than four times the average fare for this destination, which is R$ 1,477.00 round trip.
According to Google Flights, Google’s airfare search tool (GOGL), tickets (roundtrip) leaving São Paulo cost between R$ 2,250 and R$ 7,000 ($1,300) on Monday afternoon, depending on the time and number of stopovers. The values are subject to change.
The increase in prices is not only explained by tourists wishing to see the inauguration: the change in power has intensified the travel of workers of the transition team and that will compose the new government, as well as those who will no longer work in the federal capital and return to their cities.
Brasilia is the destination with the highest variation in the average airfare (+74%), comparing 2022 with the same period in 2019 (pre-pandemic), according to Kayak, the travel platform responsible for the survey. Maceió had the second highest variation in the average price (+52%), followed by Salvador (+45%).
The demand for tourists is explained not only by the inauguration ceremony, scheduled for the afternoon but also due to free concerts that are scheduled for more than 20 artists, such as Pabllo Vittar, Gaby Amarantos, Martinho da Vila, Chico César, Maria Rita, Fernanda Takai, Teresa Cristina, Johnny Hooker, Odair José, Otto and Valesca Popozuda, among others.
The ranking released by Despegar for New Year’s Eve travel brings Brasilia in eighth place with the highest number of searches for flights on the website and application of the online travel company.
Rio de Janeiro tops the list, followed by Recife (Pernambuco), São Paulo (capital), Fortaleza (Ceará), Salvador (Bahia), Maceió (Alagoas) and Natal (Rio Grande do Norte).
150,000 passengers expected
According to projections from the Brasilia International Airport, about 150 thousand passengers should pass through the terminals between New Year’s Eve and the first days of January.
Inframerica, the concessionaire that manages the terminal, said that 1,050 landings and takeoffs are expected in the federal capital between December 30 and January 2.
“Part of the expected movement in the period is related to the disembarkation of passengers heading to the city to watch the presidential inauguration,” Inframerica said in a statement.
The higher flow of passengers at Brasilia airport during the high holiday season and with political events contrasts with the reality of commercial aviation at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020, when aircraft were grounded due to the border closure order.
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