Holiday group Tui has announced a €75million (£63million) loss from the latest travel chaos, which has shut down airports and led to flight cancellations and lengthy delays.
The company said its customers were hit by about 200 canceled flights in May and June, largely due to problems at Manchester Airport due to staff shortages.
Tui continued to make losses in the three months to the end of June on airport disruption costs and reported underlying pre-tax losses of €27m (£23m) in the third quarter.
It comes after airports such as Heathrow and Gatwick have urged airlines to cut their flight schedules after chaotic scenes as staff shortages have left them struggling to cope with a sudden surge in demand for overseas holidays.
Holidaymakers have suffered flight delays and cancellations, as well as long queues, as airports struggled with baggage handling, air traffic control and security.
Sebastian Ebel, Tui’s chief financial officer and new boss, said he would be in “intensive” talks with airports and airlines, as well as resorts, to improve customer experiences.
Mr Ebel, who will take over as CEO at the end of next month when Fritz Joussen steps down, said the “entire European aviation sector continues to face challenges”.
He added: “We are rigorously addressing the operational challenges of the restart.
“We want to offer our guests the usual high Tui standard of quality and service.
“The topics of quality and customer experience are therefore right at the top of my agenda.
“To do this, I will hold intensive talks with the destinations, retailers, but also with system partners such as airports and airlines.”
While the cost of airport woes kept the group in the red in the third quarter, the result still represented a big improvement on an underlying loss of €669.8m (£566m) thanks to the recent rebound in travel demand, suffered a year earlier.
Tui said that excluding the impact of the airport disruption it would have reported an underlying profit of 48 million euros (£41million) in the three months to June 30 – its first quarterly profit since the outbreak of the pandemic.
The company expects to return to near pre-pandemic levels overall this summer, operating 82 percent of its holiday program in the third quarter, with customers reaching 84 percent of 2019 levels.
The group also expects significant underlying earnings for the full year.
But it warned that rising inflation from the Ukraine war is affecting its costs due to rising fuel prices, while saying rising energy bills could dampen demand for holidays as consumers scale back.
https://www.independent.ie/business/world/tui-reveals-75m-hit-from-airport-travel-chaos-41902166.html Tui reveals €75m damage from airport travel chaos