Volcanic ash cloud costs Thomas Cook £70m
Thomas Cook reported losses of £70m from disruptions to air travel in April, but that overall booking patterns had since recovered. Photograph: Nick Pisa
The travel firm reported this morning that the disruption will have a significant impact on its financial results this year. But on an optimistic note, it believes that the public have not been deterred from booking a foreign holiday.
Thomas Cook estimates that it lost up to £20m of revenue from customers who chose not to rebook their holiday after they were unable to fly. The rest of the £70m cost relates to the cost of supporting customers who were stranded, and bringing them home.
Chief executive Manny Fontenla-Novoa said this morning that while customers had been reluctant to book holidays during the days whenflights were cancelled, booking patterns quickly recovered once airspace was reopened.
“We are pleased with the development of our summer bookings programme, particularly given the disruption caused by the volcanic ash cloud. If we exclude the estimated impact of the volcanic ash cloud, then the group remains confident of meeting board expectations for the year,” Fontenla-Novoa said.
The volcanic ash cloud has caused significant economic damage, withthe EU estimating that European businesses lost up to €2.5bn (£2.1bn), Airlines are thought to have lost at least $1.7bn (£1.15bn).
Within the travel sector, TUI reported a £90m hit earlier this week.
Fontenla-Novoa still believes that the authorities overreacted by closing down airspace for so many days.
“The group is working with the government and relevant national and international bodies to put in place measures to ensure such a blanket ban is not needlessly imposed again and to seek some compensation for the exceptional costs and lost contribution,” he said.
Thomas Cook also reported this morning that it made a smaller pretax loss in the six months to the end of March, at £252m compared with £309m the year before.
|posted on||April 8, 2012|
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