Wizz Air sees growing travel demand ahead of the summer season and anticipates better than expected operating results for the fourth quarter of 2022.
The Hungary-based budged airline expects an operating loss of €210-190 million (US$229-207 million) in Q4 2022, citing a “stable balance sheet and strong liquidity position” with a total of €1.3 billion (US$1.4 billion) at year end.
Wizz said previously it expected the operating loss for Q4 to be slightly higher than recorded in the third quarter. Wizz Air reported an operating loss of €213 million (US$233 million) for Q3 ended December 31, 2021.
In addition, Wizz Air predicts the full year net loss to reach €652-632 million (US$711-689 million).
The airline’s 2022 financial year of 2022 closed on March 31, 2022. Wizz Air will release audited F22 annual results on June 8, 2022.
“In F22 the aviation industry continued to be impacted by COVID-19. The latest virus variant, Omicron, proved to be of benign nature, which helped to relax government travel restrictions across a majority of our network,” József Váradi, Wizz Air Chief Executive announced in a statement dated April 14, 2022.
Váradi added: “Distressingly, the war in Ukraine dented demand for air travel and destabilized commodity prices across the globe.”
The airline’s flights to Ukraine, Moldova and Russia remain suspended amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. However, Wizz Air said it continued to monitor the situation in these locations. The affected capacity was relocated to other parts of Wizz’s network.
“Despite these developments we are starting to see recovery take shape as we move closer to the summer of 2022. The strength of Wizz Air’s diversified and expanded network in combination with the most efficient fleet of aircraft and the execution against its proven ULCC model, will allow the pre-COVID-19 cost structure to be achieved – and in this industry lowest cost prevails,” Váradi explained.
Looking ahead to F23, Wizz Air will focus on maximizing revenue and “returning to productivity levels seen during the pre-COVID years”. The airline expects better profitability during the new financial year.
The airline also anticipates capacity for the first quarter will be 30% ahead of 2019, and more than 40% higher than 2019 in the second quarter.
“We have been encouraged by demand trends in recent weeks and given the shorter booking horizon expect the bookings for this summer to build significantly after Easter,” Wizz Air outlined in the statement.