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Boston-Europe fares to leap in fall, winter

Posted by Paul Makishima, Globe Assistant Sunday Editor  August 5, 2008 07:54 AM

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Looking to go to Europe this fall or winter? Better sit down. Airfares from Boston to five major destinations are projected to rise as much as 40 percent. The main culprit? Big increases in fuel surcharges over last year.
Tom Parsons and the folks at Bestfares.com ran some numbers for us, comparing last year's total average round-trip fares to London, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, and Madrid for the fall and winter travel seasons to the published numbers for this year's fall and the coming winter.
To derive their totals, they averaged basic fares and added fuel surcharges.
Now the numbers for this fall and winter don't necessarily represent exactly what you will pay because they're working with average published numbers. There will be sales, and fuel levies could change, but this should give you some idea of the kinds of increases we're probably looking at.
Bestfares also ran these same numbers for the same European destinations departing from New York, Washington, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, LA, and San Francisco. And those results largely bear a striking resemblance to our numbers. Rest assured there will be plenty of pain to go around.
Here are the Boston charts:



Fall season

 

 

 

Sept. 1

to Oct 28, ‘08 Departures

 

 

 

Sept. 1

to Oct. 28, '07 Departures

Boston To:

Airfare

Fuel Surcharge

Total

Airfare

Fuel Surcharge

Total

%

Increase

London

$374

$302

$676

$425

$130

$555

22%

Paris

$586

$350

$936

$638

$170

$808

16%

Rome

$604

$350

$954

$655

$170

$825

16%

Amsterdam

$457

$350

$807

$507

$170

$677

19%

Madrid

$511

$350

$861

$327

$170

$732

18%

 

Winter season

 

 

 

Oct. 29, ‘08 to Mar. 25, 2009 Departures

 

 

 

Oct. 29, 2007- Mar. 25, 2008 Departures

Boston To:

Airfare

Fuel surcharge

Total

Airfare

Fuel surcharge

Total

% Increase

London

$273

$302

$575

$311

$130

$441

30%

Paris

$503

$350

$853

$528

$170

$698

22%

Rome

$448

$350

$798

$430

$170

$600

33%

Amsterdam

$421

$350

$771

$404

$170

$574

34%

Madrid

$345

$350

$695

$562

$170

$497

40%

 

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30 comments so far...
  1. Once again The Boston Globe makes me sick. All of the European Capitols are
    included of course EXCEPT Dublin! How many people travel over and back to Dublin, far more than to Paris. This is just another example of an anti-Irish bias.
    How much of an effort do you have to expend to call up the airlines and inquire
    the cost of a flight to Dublin.

    Posted by Veronica Lordan August 5, 08 12:37 PM
  1. Keep in mind this isn't even adding taxes and destination charges. Traveling to London adds around $300-$400 on top of the base fare. So let's add $300 on top of that fuel charge for airport, destination, 9/11 fees, etc. This is truly disgusting.

    Posted by ArisGreek August 5, 08 12:41 PM
  1. This is only the beginning. Very soon the average American will simply not be able to afford to fly. High fuel prices are squeezing the airlines, which in turn are cutting back on service or simply going out of business. Fewer airlines and less service from those airlines that remain in business, coupled with high fuel prices mean one thing, much, much higher ticket prices.

    Posted by Steve August 5, 08 12:59 PM
  1. Not to mention how weak the US dollar is once you get over there. Paying for the airfare is just the tip of the iceberg. An Amercian family vacationing in Europe these days, you best be rich or not afraid to go deeper into debt.. An average dinner for four (typically $175 to $200 in the US) will cost the equivalant of $375-$400 in any europe country. Add car rental, hotel, tour bus tickets, museum passes, etc, you better sell the house (Oh yeah, we can't because we are in the midst of a housing crisis).

    This is good for the US economy. That means US citizens will take their vacations within the US, and help improve the tourism within the US. That coupled with all the europeans coming to the US because the euro goes a lot further here.

    Time to put off that European vacation for a few years. Hello Disney World. Alaska or Aruba is also very nice. Who needs Europe.

    Posted by Tommy Healey August 5, 08 02:17 PM
  1. Why on earth is Dublin not listed here? Bloody Boston Globe yet again does not include a major European capital, Dublin. Boston to Dublin (or Shannon) must easily be one of the most popular flights into New England, since Boston is the most Irish city in America. Usual Boston Globe bias towards the Irish.

    Posted by John Hession August 5, 08 02:39 PM
  1. Calm down Veronica, I didn't see Berlin on the list, or Athens, just to name a few...Dublin is most certainly NOT more popular than Paris, I hate to break it to you...and the Boston Globe does a pretty good job at informing the public of these matters so I wouldn't knock on them.

    Posted by JB August 5, 08 02:40 PM
  1. Veronica,
    How about the anti-German, anti-Polish, anti-Hungarian, anti-Czech, anti-Swedish, anti-Danish, anti-Russian and anti-Portugese biases? Their capitals were not mentioned either! The five cities chosen were just examples, not an all-inclusive list. It doesn't mean nobody other cities are not important. You can mop up from getting sick now.

    Posted by Fred Glazer August 5, 08 02:50 PM
  1. Why is everyone getting so frustrated about this? You have to look at both sides of the supposed 'issue' The airline industry is the only means for rapid and convenient travel and they are not jacking up the prices to make a higher profit... they have to add higher fuel surcharges due to the increase in oil/fuel per barrel. Prices per barrel have been the highest they have ever been for aviation fuel and the ticket prices will need to reflect that. If you don't want to pay for the extra fuel... then don't fly - miss out on all the great sights that the rest of the world and the country have to offer.
    Secondly, I have to directly comment on a previous comment left - How is this 'blog' in any way anti Irish? - Did one ever think that the fuel surcharge is NOT getting hiked up? There was never anything to demote Ireland or Dublin in any way - ALSO-- i just booked a flight to Ireland SHANNON - let's not discriminate and only mention Dublin, Shannon is a major hub for the southern part of the country as well... the fuel surcharge only went up $15. since last September when I last went to Ireland.
    You see folks, due to some ignorant people, not only is Commercial and International Aviation being affected but General Aviation as well - to rent a 2 seater Cessna for an hour the price is upwards of 180.00 - in order to even think about applying for a F.O position one must have a strong backhground in flying and upwards of about 800 hours. You do the math---
    Complain all that you want about this --- Nothing is going to be done about it... Nothing NEEDS to be done about it... Until the fuel/oil prices start going DOWN.

    You're Welcome.

    Posted by Melissa August 5, 08 02:58 PM
  1. Veronica,

    Are you kidding me? No other paper in the U.S. covered or supported the peace-making process as well as the Globe. Until recently, the paper had a writer stationed there and its coverage of Irish arts and culture is unsurpassed. Its music critic helped uncover the genius of U2. The paper has shortcomings, but its coverage of all things Irish is above and beyond the rest.

    Dayworker

    P.S. - I'm headed to Shannon in the fall, and it looks like $764 is the best I can do.

    Posted by Dayworker August 5, 08 03:03 PM
  1. Boston to Dublin?

    Yes, Boston may be the most Irish city, but neither the airport nor the airlines recognize that. Only one airline flies direct from Boston to Ireland and that's Aer Lingus. Every other airline is either via New York or London

    Posted by Mick August 5, 08 03:04 PM
  1. veronica - you should chill out a bit about Dublin not being on the list - and I don't see how the Globe is totally anti-bias towards the Irish...

    Posted by Aidan August 5, 08 03:11 PM
  1. Comment 1 is fascinating. I'm sure the folks in Berlin, Lisbon, Brussels, Copenhagen, Oslo, Budapest, etc., will be pleased to know their cities no longer qualify as European capitals. And where do you get the idea that more Americans travel to Dublin than Paris? More Americans visit the Netherlands every year than Ireland, and something like three times as many Americans visit France as Ireland. Maybe you're exaggerating the interest in Dublin a bit, but if you care that much, why not pick up the phone and call the airlines yourself?

    Posted by Chucky B August 5, 08 03:11 PM
  1. Um, so, the Globe didn't even conduct the study, they just reported the results. They study didn't include Dublin OR Shannon so there's not really any way the Globe could have included those cities. If you've got a beef with Dublin not being on the list, you should complain to the people at bestfares.com, not the Boston Globe.

    Put down your pint glass and read the whole article before complaining about, eh?

    Posted by SJB August 5, 08 03:53 PM
  1. My sentiments exactly Chucky

    Posted by Thomas R August 5, 08 04:11 PM
  1. The Boston Globe is not anti-Irish or anti-Catholic?
    Welcome to Boston, obviously you guys haven't been here long enough to remember.

    The blog itself isn't anti Irish, but the topic raised of the Boston Globe being anti Irish as well as anti-Catholic is most definitely valid.

    The Globe has a long streak of anti-Irish and anti Catholic rhetoric and opinions stretching back to its founding.

    "This is Boston"? Hardly. the slogan should read "this is the Boston we want everyone to

    Posted by CharlesTaylor August 5, 08 04:21 PM
  1. not to be devil's advocate SJB, but the article leads you to believe that Bestfares.com conducted the study at the Globe's request

    Tom Parsons and the folks at Bestfares.com ran some numbers for us, comparing last year's total average round-trip fares to London, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, and Madrid for the fall and winter travel seasons to the published numbers for this year's fall and the coming winter.

    Posted by Mick August 5, 08 04:27 PM
  1. Let's take this whole thing out of context further! I am sure that airline fares to Asia and the rest of the Far East is going to go up way further than the "jog" to Europe. I don't see any Alaskans raising Cain on here either. That's a further trip and the fuel surcharge is going to lay the smack down there also.

    Have you checked your supermarket slips from this time last year? Milk is way higher on a percentage basis than oil...and I would throw eggs at Veronica's original comments, however those are up nearly 75% since last year.

    Enjoy New England and tell the airlines to go pound sand everyone!

    Posted by Mutt August 5, 08 04:34 PM
  1. What's more of a concern is something that you're seeing across the Globe--the use of free, outside resources (thinly disguised advertisements, in this case for BestFares.com) that "help" the Globe do their work. You can bet they didn't pay for the that analysis by BestFares. This "reporting" would be fine if were marked as advertorial ( which it is), but instead they continue to use outside PR resources to fudge the line between news, analysis and advertising. It's good PR and revenue for BestFares and cheap filler content for the Globe.

    Posted by Dave August 5, 08 04:44 PM
  1. I must say that I'm pleasantly surprised by how literate everyone is in this comment section! Even the people with nonsensical rants about some supposed anti-Irish bias are using proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

    As a Berliner, I accept the fact that my great city does not necessarily make it onto a five-city sampling of European destinations. Imagine that.

    Posted by Patrick August 5, 08 04:47 PM
  1. everyone stay home and watch those fares drop to nothing - or better yet the airlines go under!!! its the morons that pay these fares that are responsible -if the airlines cant get these fares they will drop like a rock !!!!!! i love capitalism !!!!!

    Posted by asdasd August 5, 08 05:07 PM
  1. what!!! They didn't mention Reykavik, Iceland!!!!!! I am appalled!!!!!!! The Boston Globe should shut down NOW for this.. I am calling Menino.

    Posted by THe_ICe_man August 5, 08 05:26 PM
  1. *London in early November for $575, I'll take it!
    *Paris for $853, no thanks, I'll drive to Old Montreal for $100, RT.
    *Rome? pass...too many pickpockets.
    *Amsterdam for $771? okay a bit pricey, but you could save some bucks and have a nice little adventure by instead flying to London for $575, then taking the rail and the Hoek van Holland ferry to A-dam for £29 one-way, £58 return.
    *Madrid for $695? sounds reasonable when compared to the cost of Celtics and Red Sox post-season tickets...
    -O

    Posted by O. Shore August 5, 08 05:49 PM
  1. Hey Folks, Frankfurt is actually the busiest airport in mainland Europe and second busiest to Heathrow in all of Europe. Didn't see that airport mentioned either, although that's usually about the same as Amsterdam. It may not be a bad thing to have fewer flights to Europe and a little less air travel then we've had, as airplanes gobble up enormous quantities of fuel and also cause a fair amount of environmental damage. And going to Europe should be a little bit special and not just an everyday occurrence.

    Posted by jurgfella August 5, 08 08:07 PM
  1. No Dublin? Just another example of anti-Irish bias.

    Posted by Joseph August 5, 08 09:20 PM
  1. You can bet Veronica has a beef about just about everything, if she gets so upset about Dublin not being on the list. Not to mention a bunch of other European capitol cities. Let's go to Dublin on our honeymoon - yeah, people say that a lot, no one ever wants to go to Paris!
    The Boston Globe covers a lot of Irish news - wake up Veronica, it's never going to carry ALL Irish news because ---- news flash ----- we're in America! You want all Irish news? Go read a Dublin paper.

    Posted by Lainie August 5, 08 09:48 PM
  1. Well I want the Dublin prices to be listed. It may not be as popular as London/Paris/Rome/Amsterdam but there are more seats to Dublin than Madrid. Mostly I go via London, but have used AA BOS-ORD-DUB. "Blood Paddies"-what frank racism, and allowed on this blog- the anti-Irish sentiment is coming out ;-)......

    Posted by Brian August 5, 08 09:51 PM
  1. Who cares.... If you really want to see how expensive flights are - look at a flight to smaller markets here in the USA. Boston-Rochester $900, Boston-Tri Cities $1200, Boston-Birmingham $795....should i continue. These destinations are all approximately 1000 miles - its more than 3000 to Europe. If you cant afford it dont go, leaves more seats for the rest of us.

    Posted by Michael Hunt August 5, 08 11:17 PM
  1. Why can't I find an airfare from Boston to anywhere in Europe for even close to the airfare I would pay to a major city on Americas west coast? There's more to this than just the fuel charge unless flights across the USA are running on hot air.

    Posted by Jim Stoddard August 6, 08 01:00 AM
  1. Everyone needs to just ZIP it.

    Honestly people... if you have never been to Europe before, why are you complaining about it now? You're never going to go. You were never going to go in the first place.

    Never belittle the Red Sox!

    PS- Ireland is the cheapest destination to fly to from Boston- from there you can hop on Ryanair or another Aer Lingus flight for less than 10 EURO to anywhere... I went to Scotland for 2 pounds. London for 8 pounds. Paris for 10 Euro, madrid for 8 Euro and Rome for a whopping 7 Euro.

    Learn the facts before (you) run your mouth....

    Posted by Melissa August 6, 08 10:13 AM
  1. "Frankfurt is actually the busiest airport in mainland Europe and second busiest to Heathrow in all of Europe. Didn't see that airport mentioned either,"

    definitely not, it is Roissy Charles de Gaulle (Paris)

    "debt.. An average dinner for four (typically $175 to $200 in the US) will cost the equivalant of $375-$400 in any europe country" ????

    definitely not ! for 25 euros per head you get a very good meal in any capital, so it comes out to 100 euros, i.e around $130...

    etc....etc... all these comments are mostly prejudices. ask the folks who travelled to Europe, read Lonely planet or any other guide book or check the web, you might see how wrong you are ! :-(

    Posted by eric August 8, 08 03:46 PM
 
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