European low-cost carrier Wizz Air says its operations have “normalized” in recent months after suffering disruption earlier this year.
The Hungary-based carrier, which is one of the continent’s fastest growing airlines, said it delivered “solid results” for its second quarter between July and September after enduring a “first quarter operationally difficult. These problems have forced Wizz to reduce its planned capacity for this summer.
Jozsef Varadi, CEO of Wizz Air, added: “A lot has been done within the aviation industry to address the significant issues that arose at the start of calendar year 2022.
“As a result, our operational performance has recently normalized and we are now back in line with our historically low levels of flight cancellations and disruptions.”
In the six months from April to September, Wizz Air increased passenger numbers by 112% to 26.5 million, with revenue up 149% year-on-year to 2.2 billion euros.
But despite this increase in revenue, the airline still recorded an operating loss of 63.8 million euros during the half, as Wizz struggled with rising fuel prices and the costs associated with the rapid increase in capacity and staff.
Varadi said revenue over the six months was 31% higher than the same pre-Covid period, with higher load factors and returns “no longer being held back by Covid-19 or the war in Ukraine. “.
Wizz’s average ticket revenue increased to €44.60 per passenger, up 3.1% from 2019, while ancillary revenue reached €38.20 per passenger, an increase of 18.3 % compared to pre-Covid figures.
The airline currently plans to operate 35% more capacity for the winter period from October to March 2023 compared to 2019/2020.
“Our diversification strategy in the Gulf will also see more inbound and outbound routes to the Middle East and we expect a moderate counter-seasonal contribution in terms of traffic and revenue from these destinations,” Varadi added.
“While the macroeconomic environment remains challenging and uncertainty for consumers has increased, we have put in place measures to mitigate the impact on our costs.”