Travel Agency: High Number of Summer Vacation Cancellations After Drop in Oil Prices

Travel Agency: High Number of Summer Vacation Cancellations After Drop in Oil Prices

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - If you live outside of an oil-driven economy, the low gas prices give you leeway to do more, like travel.

Here in the Basin, it's different. Many had to cancel their vacations after the drop in oil prices.

When we think summer, many think vacation. But for the Basin, many had to postpone their vacation plans until oil prices rise again.

"We had lots of people planning last fall and early winter and spring, then they lose their jobs and obviously they can't afford to go at that point," said Bob Landreth, Co-Owner of Travel Associates International of Midland.

Travel Associates International had a slow year in 2009 with the last bust. At the moment, they're doing a third of the sales compared to this time last year.

"People are a little nervous because the oil keeps dropping and they're concerned whether there will be another round of layoffs. So you don't plan anything at that point," said Landreth.

The dip in summer travel can also be felt at SkyWest Aviation, Inc. They repair airplanes and offer reviews before you buy one. Although they're feeling the heat, they stay busy.

The company is seeing a decline in the amount of hours residents are flying.

"A lot of these aircraft are based on hours flown or a calendar in a 12-month given period. We're seeing a lot more calendar-based inspections than we're seeing hourly," said Paul Armstrong, Owner of SkyWest Aviation, Inc.

But they find a silver lining in the status of the oil economy. Housing isn't as bad as it was just months ago.

"Getting talent to come to the area is a lot easier for us now. So that's been the good thing to the slowdown," said Armstrong.

Now, many play the waiting game, as they keep an eye on what the price per barrel does next.

"Oil prices if they stay in the medium range that will help some, but if they drop below the $40 to $45 they're in today, it could be a pretty tough year for us next year. It's hard to say, if it stays down. We never know," said Landreth.