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If you’re used to paying a certain amount for your Europe flights, well, you’ll have to dramatically rethink those figures because recent airfare and fuel surcharge hikes are driving prices through the roof. The fare increases we've noticed average at $39 since this period in 2010 and $25 since last month. That may not seem like much yet, but trends are gaining momentum in a consumer-unfriendly direction.
Rethink Your Destination
A key strategy for avoiding the highest airfares this summer is to choose your next vacation based on seasonality or vast availability. For example, at time of publication Aer Lingus was advertising a peak-season Ireland sale. Based on my research, Dublin is the most consistently affordable destination of those I'm tracking with as much as $478 less than last month’s fares.On the flipside, most other destinations' rates are seeing price increases, as is the case with Madrid fares hich have increased by much as $263 since last February.
Get some help with the above airport codes here.
- Flip through our Hidden Europe: 10 Secret Treasures photo gallery for inspiring off-the-beaten-path locales. Skip tourist lines in well-known cities and instead head to the more obscure Gozo, Levoca, Sopot, and Varena, among other secret destinations.
- Find an airline-by-airline breakdown of additional charges in our SmarterTravel Ultimate Guide to Airline Fees Europe Edition.
- Check out SmarterTravel's Europe travel guides for general tips such as when to go.
- Research travel alerts before taking off by going to the U.S. State Department's website.