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EasyJet all set to ‘ramp up’ flights for summer

EasyJet Q2 cash better than guidance

EasyJet (LON:EZJ) confirmed hefty losses as a result of the pandemic but stated its intention to “ramp up our operations to match the level of demand we see in the market”.

The airline said that it is anticipating a loss before tax of £690-730m for the first half of the year, up to 31 March, slightly above its initial expectations.

The FTSE 250 company also stated that its capacity forecasting meant it was able to rein in its costs while a focus on cash generative flying over the winter months resulted in second-quarter cash being “better than guidance”.

While the company gave an optimistic outlook and welcomed news that international travel was set to reopen, its chief executive, Johan Lundgren, warned against the costly nature of testing programmes.

The earliest date for international travel from England remains as the 17 May, as Grant Shapps, the UK Transport Secretary, telling the BBC: “This is the first time I’m able to come on and say I’m not advising against booking foreign holidays.”

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Lundgren added further comments along with the company’s trading update:

“easyJet has maintained a disciplined approach to flying during the first half of our financial year, resulting in a first half loss and cash burn better than expectations. We continue to have access to significant levels of liquidity alongside easyJet’s major cost-out programme which continues to deliver ongoing cost and efficiency benefits. All of this positions us well to lead the recovery.”

“We welcome the confirmation by the UK Government that international travel is on track to reopen as planned in mid-May. easyJet was founded to make travel accessible for all and so we continue to engage with Government to ensure that the cost of the required testing is driven down so that it doesn’t risk turning back the clock and make travel too costly for some.”

“We continue to closely monitor the situation across Europe and with vaccination programmes accelerating, most countries are planning to resume flying at scale in May.  We have the operational flexibility to rapidly increase flying and add destinations to match demand.  easyJet is ready to resume flying, prepared for the ramp up and looking forward to being able to reunite people with their families or take them on leisure and business flights once again.  As a result, we remain well-positioned for the recovery this summer and beyond.”

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