CHICAGO (WLS) -- After being cooped up for several years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, people are traveling again regardless of what it costs. And the costs are not low.
"The demand is so high. Planes are at full capacity and with they'd the airlines don't have to worry about dropping those rates," said Mark Janus of Janus Travel.
Victor Rivera is taking his family to Italy for 17 days in June. He originally planned the trip before the pandemic, but now that they are finally able to get away Inflation has made it much more expensive.
"Everything is crazy. Not only the trips but buying a new pair of sneakers for my kids," Rivera said.
Demand, along with the fuel prices and a shortage of pilots, has driven average airfare up by about 25 percent according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Experts advise buying a flight when you first find it online because it will likely cost more the next time you look. That's partially because airlines are getting more sophisticated with online buyers.
"That tends to come from algorithms and tracking programs the online travel industries do," said Ryan Roman, Sunset Travel and Cruise.
Travel agents say they are able to avoid those traps because they negotiate rates in large packages. But they are also seeing prices rising dramatically for things like meals and lodging.
"What a normal fare of $800 to $1,000 would have been is now $1,500 to $1,700 to Europe now," Roman said.
Experts say there's no end in sight to the travel price increases. They say the best advice is to book as far ahead as possible and if possible be flexible with your travel dates.