No last-minute cheap deals this summer, says Tui boss

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Holiday giant Tui will not offer last-minute, low-cost summer deals amid picking up customer demand, its chief executive has said.

Fritz Joussen said the company will maintain its current prices, unlike in previous years.

“There will be hardly any last-minute offers for this summer,” he told reporters.

“Over the past six weeks, we’ve seen demand beyond 2019. We want to keep that momentum going, but we’re not suddenly going to switch to discounts.”

Tui said prices for this summer had risen by 20%, but bosses pointed out that this was due to longer holidays and more expensive trips, including five-star hotels, as many people are traveling again. for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic.

It came as the company more than halved its losses over the past six months as the rebound in customer numbers accelerated and bookings surged.

It recorded a revenue loss of €614.5m (£525m) for the half-year to March 31, after a loss of €1.3bn (£1.11bn) for the same period a year earlier.

Tui told shareholders it could therefore return to profit by the end of the year.

He said he expected a “strong” summer and had already reached 85% of the booking levels seen in the summer of 2019, before feeling the impact of the pandemic.

He said the last quarter had “significantly improved” as the easing of Covid-19 restrictions helped boost bookings.

The travel group said its UK operation “continues to lead the way” for summer bookings, which are currently showing an 11% increase on levels seen in summer 2019.

Tui said he expects overall summer bookings to “near” 2019 levels.

It was supported by holidaymakers booking “more short-term” and also spending more money on each trip, the company said.

Meanwhile, revenue in the past half-year has more than quintupled to €4.5bn (£3.8bn) from the same period a year earlier, when the business was still struggling with coronavirus restrictions.

Mr. Joussen said: “The strong demand for travel and the very good commercial performance confirm our forecasts.

“2022 will be a good financial year. The capacity is almost reaching the pre-corona level of 2019.

“After two years of crisis, we expect Tui to return to profitability in the current financial year with a clearly positive underlying EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes).

“It’s the basis for new growth.”

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