Being a traveller in the age of rapid inflation

Primarily a discussion post. I’m a travel junkie – both academically and in practice. I keep an eye on things like price of accommodation and airfare, costs of living in other cities, etc.

I crunched rough numbers from the past several years . I generally dedicate 30% of my net income to travel. It would be more, but I garner quite a few reward points from work travel, which subsidizes some flying and accommodations.

Some things I’ve noticed that I expect will necessitate either ongoing lifestyle changes or cuts:

1. My normal-life commuting costs are up about 30% since 2020.

2. My savings have taken a hit the last year in the markets, but overall minimal negative impact from 2019 to now as the market has leaped and fallen in that time.

3. Groceries. This is actually the one I notice most. I moved from rural Ontario to Vancouver, which was a 20% increase by itself. Add another 10-20% to that just since I moved in the fall. As someone who lives alone, I used to get by spending $50 a week at the grocery store. Now it’s nearly $100.

4. Flights and dynamic pricing. I’m an aeroplan status holder and generally fly star alliance. That’s an entire discussion in itself with the ongoing nightmare of air travel, but the prices reflect the situation. They’re as high as I’ve ever seen. The majority of my travel is 3-4 day trips in the North America, and one extended trip annually. The price of airfare now essentially dictates my choices.

5. Rental cars are in an even worse spot due to massive supply constraints.

6. Despite airfare and cars being insanely expensive, it’s clearly not deterring travel much , because accommodations pricing is also higher than ever. Much more than 10-20% too, from what I can gather.

Curious how the folks here are managing or plan to manage the rapidly shifting cost landscape for travel. Staying closer to home? Prioritizing cheaper destinations? Meaningful cuts to other spending? Let’s hear it.

A few measures I’ve consciously taken:
1. Much, much attentive to pricing and willing to be much more flexible on destinations for short trips.

2. Cut out meaningless driving at home.

3. Shopping the flyer rather than the aisle at the grocery store .

4. Less Uber, more public transit.

5. If going away for a weekend, I check things like Meetup for free activities before anything else.

Being a traveller in the age of rapid inflation