Tours Travel

Travel organization TUI goes all-in for the summer

TUI hopes for an exuberant summer thanks to worldwide vaccinations. This should help close the pit that the pandemic has left.

The German travel company TUI is hoping for the summer to ease the financial noose around her neck. In a statement she published on Tuesday, she says she has already received 2.8 million bookings. That is slightly more than half of the bookings in the same period two years ago, when Covid-19 was not yet available. This summer she wants to offer 80 percent of her normal supply.

TUI believes that the number of bookings will increase sharply because people wait longer to book a holiday. In addition, the tour operator expects that they will spend more on a trip this year, as they were able to save during the lockdowns. The price of the trips that have already been booked is on average one fifth higher than in 2019.

80%

offer

The travel organization TUI will offer 80 percent of its normal offer this summer.

Summer should help close the pandemic well. From October to December, TUI suffered a loss of 803 million euros, compared to 129 million euros in 2019. The winter quarter is traditionally difficult, but was hit extra by the many travel restrictions. Turnover fell by almost 88 percent to 468 million euros.

8,000 jobs gone

The figures are even more dramatic for the financial year as a whole. TUI suffered a loss of 3.1 billion euros, while sales collapsed from 18.9 billion euros the year before to 7.9 billion euros. The German government came up with 4.8 billion euros to prevent bankruptcy, but that could not prevent the company from having to cut 8,000 jobs.

CEO Fritz Joussen is now putting his hopes on the global vaccination campaigns, especially those in the United Kingdom, TUI’s main market. ‘We see that the vaccinations are being administered with an impressive speed and ambitious goals. Demand is high and people want to travel, ”he said on Tuesday.

The question is how realistic that hope is. Many uncertainties remain and the British government advises the British not to book any travel for the time being. In Germany, TUI’s second most important market, vaccinations are also going a lot slower. This is also reflected in the bookings. Of the 2.8 million bookings for the summer, only 500,000 came from Germany.

More luxurious segment

The competition is also hoping for a good summer to make up for the losses. ‘Of course it depends very much on the vaccinations and travel advice,’ says Simone van den Berk of the travel organization Corendon. ‘We have different scenarios for a restart – from May, from June or from July – and we notice that our customers have a huge appetite for travel. We also see more enthusiasm for the more luxurious segment. People have been able to save and think: ‘If I go on a trip now, it must be great’. ‘

Corendon does not want to venture into predictions for the summer, but for the time being consumers are taking a wait-and-see attitude, it sounds. ‘The government advises against traveling and people are now mainly concerned with the corona measures and the snow,’ says Van den Berk. “We hope that will change from March.”

The same sound is heard at Sunweb, which saw bookings drop by 80 percent in January compared to previous years. “Bookings for the summer are now starting to pick up,” says spokesman Tim van den Berg. “But we will never be able to make up for the whole year.”

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