Re-opening of international travel sees profits soar at Jet2

Leisure travel group, Jet2, has reported a big rise in profits in its unaudited interim results for the half year ended 30 September 2022, despite a difficult return to normal post-Covid operations.

The Leeds-headquartered business recorded an increase in group profit before foreign exchange revaluation and taxation to £505m (2021: £195.1m loss), which was also 44% ahead of the group’s 2019 pre-Covid performance.

Total profit for the period after taxation was £356m (2021: £163.5m loss) and Revenue was £3.6bn (2021: £430m). Passenger numbers for the period increased by 632% to 11.20m (2021: 1.53m).

Philip Meeson, executive chairman, said: “Our Leisure Travel business has continued its encouraging recovery following the reopening of international travel in early 2022.

“Strong customer demand, in particular for package holidays, plus a robust pricing environment and considered cost control, have underpinned a substantially improved financial performance compared to recent Covid impacted summer seasons, but also against pre-Covid summer 2019.

“Unfortunately some customers still faced frustrating delays as our operations were directly impacted by the broader disruption seen across the aviation sector and its supply chains.

“In addition, our inflight retail financial performance was weaker than expected, due to product supply chain issues early in the summer season, plus poor onboard product availability caused by resource constraints at our third party inflight retail provider.”

Meeson added losses are to be expected in the second half of the financial year, as the business continues to invest in additional aircraft, marketing, retaining staff through the winter to ensure resilience ahead of next summer and attracting new employees to enable further expansion.

Jet2 notes the disruption seen across the aviation sector and its supply chains in mid-summer resulted in significant delay and compensation costs of more than £50m.

And in its outlook it warns the Group faces cost pressures from fuel, carbon, a strengthened US dollar and wage increases, meaning its margins may come under some pressure.