Analysis Shows Drop in Short-Term Airline Bookings to Europe After Brussels Attack

  • Skift Take
    More evidence that terrorism is directly impacting travel in Europe.

    An analysis of data from Sojern shows a notable decline in flight bookings across Europe in the days following the March 22 Brussels attacks.

    Sojern tracked traveler searches and bookings from its travel partners, finding that the searches for flights to Brussels have dropped almost as much as future bookings. In addition, bookings for flights to Brussels are down across every global region.

    North and South America have dropped off the least, while both Eastern and Western Europe severely reduced booking flights to Brussels.

    “Likely the result of widespread media coverage, Sojern saw 60 percent increased search activity for U.S. travelers to Brussels on March 22nd,” Mark Rabe, president and CEO of Sojern, told Skift. “Bookings, however, dipped nine percent week-over-week beginning the following day. Given the rapid return to normal search and booking patterns after last year’s tragic events in France, we anticipate a recovery for Brussels within the next month.”

    A look at flight bookings and searches shows a sustained declined in the week following the attack.

    Travel intent from those in the U.K., Spain and Germany fell the most following the attack.

    A breakdown of travel intent to major European cities shows a wider slowdown in flight bookings.

    The pattern of a widespread decline following the March 22 attack mimics data from last year’s Paris attacks, according to Sojern. The percentages denote week-on-week decline in flight bookings per Sojern’s analysis.

    Search/Book DateAmsterdamBarcelonaBerlinBrusselsLondonMadridMoscowMunichParisRomeZurich
    16 Mar 16-6%-6%-2%-6%-5%-3%7%-6%-5%-2%-1%
    17 Mar 16-11%-8%-5%-12%-9%-8%5%-11%-7%-6%-7%
    18 Mar 16-3%-3%-4%-8%-5%3%5%10%1%-2%-2%
    19 Mar 16-7%0%-1%-6%-3%-1%2%3%1%1%0%
    20 Mar 16-2%4%-3%-5%-1%1%2%0%0%0%-2%
    21 Mar 16-3%4%-1%-1%-3%0%1%2%0%4%1%
    22 Mar 16-10%-11%-20%-12%-11%-8%-4%-10%-14%-12%-8%
    23 Mar 16-17%-16%-17%-30%-16%-18%-8%-6%-19%-17%-12%
    24 Mar 16-18%-18%-19%-37%-16%-22%-10%-10%-21%-20%-10%
    25 Mar 16-22%-19%-20%-45%-22%-29%-15%-31%-27%-19%-18%
    26 Mar 16-21%-23%-28%-44%-22%-22%-14%-27%-29%-26%-27%
    27 Mar 16-32%-34%-38%-51%-29%-29%-10%-32%-35%-33%-30%
    28 Mar 16-25%-22%-26%-50%-20%-19%-7%-27%-27%-22%-22%
    Photo Credit: Grand Place in Brussels in 2011. Juan Rubiano / Flickr

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