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Pandemic Breaks Models

Patterns have been dislocated and Covid-19 is to be blamed.

Revenue management, the system that helps airlines price tickets, uses complex historical data that may be completely out of whack due to the giant drop in demand dealt by the pandemic. The Wall Street Journal reports that pricing systems are now unable to differentiate days and seasons on certain routes as they once were, sometimes giving jaw-dropping deals, and other times head-scratchingly high prices for empty planes. The problem is likely to get worse, says the report, as historical data from this year is largely unavailable or unrepresentative.