Following the recent announcement from Turkish Airlines that the resumption of both its domestic and international flights will be pushed back to June 4th and June 10th respectively, Chairman Ilker Ayci addressed that the airline will hold off on any job cuts and maintain its staff count for the next two years.
In an interview with Haberturk news website, he addressed this statement saying, “We see 2020 and 2021 not as years of profitability, but as years to protect and maintain our employment structures. Our job and focus will be to stay layoffs, by as much as we can afford to.”
On the back of Ayci’s statement, there is doubt in the industry that airline revenue will resume to pre-virus market levels immediately, rather the global outlook is gearing for a gradual return spanning over the next couple of years. The sudden dive in passenger volume and travel patterns due to state restrictions and social distancing programs has constricted revenue flow on airline balance sheets as well as the entire industry. In March alone Turkish Airlines recorded a 53% decline in passenger volume when compared to 2019.
Turkish Airlines serves a global route network of over 120 countries. The coronavirus has undoubtedly challenged this enormous feat, but the interview went on to reveal that the airline is exploring new forms of revenue which will include selling off its older aircraft and adapting its fleet to a more young and efficient generation of aircraft. This will come coupled with an increase in ticket prices, a size reduction of some of its domestic and international offices and an implementation of health measures onboard flights. All as measures to mitigate losses being experienced across the industry.