European holiday group TUI said demand was picking up in recent weeks and that its July 2021 load factors were evidence of a pent-up desire for travel.
The group reported load factors of 89% in July for Belgian markets, 84% for Germany, 83% for the Netherlands and 71% for the UK, according to presentation slides accompanying results for its third quarter.
“Customer demand and booking momentum remain high as soon as state travel restrictions are withdrawn,” chief executive Fritz Joussen said. “Especially in Germany and in the continental European markets, the current booking figures show a high pent-up demand.”
However, the London-listed group operated just 42% of its normal pre-COVID-19 capacity in July.
It also announced it had cut its capacity plans for the peak summer months from July to October, given the changing travel restrictions. It now expects to operate 60% of the volumes seen in summer 2019, compared with previous plans to operate 75%.
“After a mixed start into the summer due to changing governmental advice, we see an improving booking trend for the remainder of the summer season,” the group commented in the presentation slides.