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Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  29 Jan 2010

TRAVEL: Budget Airline Profits from Bumper Festive Season

 





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Low cost airline Mango reported today that the airline achieved load factors averaging 96% over the December 2009 holiday period and it also reported a 3% increase in traveller numbers during the 2009 calendar year versus 2008 numbers. In addition, the airline says that it’s experienced a surge in travel interest since the World Cup Cape Town draw early December last year.

An upbeat Nico Bezuidenhout, Mango CEO, says that the airline’s festive season figures, coupled with the annual growth in numbers, is a consequence of both travellers trading down to low cost air travel and, ultimately, the continued growth in the number of South Africans that opt for air transport.

“I believe that the affordability of air travel caused by healthy market competition continues to stimulate the market, despite the recession.” He says that the increased pricing pressure airlines experienced as a consequence of the slowed economy contributed to this upward movement in the low cost sector.

“Airlines are under great pressure to maintain affordable pricing in a declining market with conditions increasing the competitive nature of the sector. Aggressive pricing has seen airline average fares decline somewhat, but, in our case, it has had the positive impact of increasing load factor medians.”

Bezuidenhout remains confident that the industry will assume sustained growth by the third quarter this year.

Following the World Cup draw in Cape Town on December 4 last year, Mango also experienced a surge in enquiries and bookings for flights during the tournament. “The majority thus far have been from tour groups,” says Bezuidenhout, saying that over and above scheduled bookings, a significant number of late night charters have been secured. “It seems travel between matches and home bases apply as much to teams as it does to fans.” He expects the trend to continue.


 
 
 
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