Wiz Air carried five times more passengers in March than in the same month last year as the airline continued to recover from the sector Covid-19.
The Hungarian budget air carrier revealed that about 2.5 million flights were booked by its customers last month, compared to just 480,200 in March 2021, when many European countries were under severe national lockdown.
The number of passengers who flew with the airline in the last 12 months is more than 27 million, which is still about one third less than the year before the start of the coronavirus epidemic.
Recovery: Hungarian Budget Air Carrier revealed that about 2.5 million flights were booked by its customers last month, compared to just 480,200 in March 2021.
Load factor levels additionally rose 23.7 percentage points to 86.2 percent year-on-year in March, while its seating capacity tripled to 2.9 million.
Last month, Wise Air launched 18 new routes from London Gatwick Airport to popular holiday destinations such as Milan, Mallorca and Vienna, and announced three new routes between Italy and the Greek island of Schiathos.
Also, it has announced that from July and August, another Airbus A321 will be added to the Romanian bases of Bucharest and Cluj-Napoca, as well as an Albanian Tirana.
The company is expanding its operations despite significant financial turmoil caused by the sinking of the airline, which recorded a huge loss of € 576 million in the last financial year.
This expansion effort has contributed to the firm posting a loss of € 267.5 million in its most recent quarterly results covering the last three months of 2021, although the emergence of the Omicron variant has also had a significant impact.
Wiz Air’s trading update has resulted in massive flight cancellations and delays affecting travelers from London Heathrow and Manchester airports.
New Destinations: Last month Wiz Air launched 18 new routes from London Gatwick Airport and announced three new routes between Italy and the Greek island of Scythias.
Both British Airways (BA) and EasyJet have blamed high covid-initiated absenteeism among employees for the problem, with the former canceling dozens of flights today and the latter canceling more than 220 flights since last Friday.
The first day of the Easter school holiday has been marked in England without an international travel ban since the outbreak began on Monday, but staff shortages mean airlines are struggling to cope with rising demand.
Over the past three days, passengers traveling through Manchester Airport have complained of being lined up for more than three hours to check-in, waiting too long to recover their luggage and missing flights due to delays.
Shares of EasyJet and BA’s parent company International Airlines Group (IAG) both declined in the first trade of the FTSE 250 index today, but recovered slightly before trading closed today.
However, shares of Wise Air did not show a similar rebound and were still 1.4 percent or 40 points lower at £ 28.21.
Ras Mold, AJ Bell’s investment director, said: ‘News bulletins showing long lines of people waiting to board a plane will move a lot of people away from the jet-setting.
‘Together, these forces could result in thousands of people not bothering to fly again this year, and it’s better to wait until everything is fine.
He added: “To make matters worse, the price of oil is stubbornly high, which is putting pressure on fuel costs … Rising fuel prices could affect corporate revenue in the airline sector unless additional costs go to consumers.”
“It’s a big risk in the face of how consumers are under considerable pressure due to rising cost of living and may not be able to afford high ticket prices, but many airlines have significant debt that they are desperate to reduce.”