Strong pent-up demand over the holiday season has prompted Ryanair to post a more optimistic outlook with the group now indicating that it expects to earn more yearly profit than previously anticipated.
The low-cost carrier indicated that it was the first time in three years that holiday season traffic was not affected by external factors such as COVID-19 or the war in Ukraine. As such, strong pent-up travel demand resulted in a “stronger than expected peak Christmas/New Year traffic and fares”.
The group now estimates that its Profit After Tax (PAT) in FY2023, which ends on March 31, 2022, will be between €1.325 and €1.425 billion ($1.4 and $1.51 billion). Its previous PAT guidance estimated year-end results between €1 and €1.2 billion ($1.06 and $1.27 billion). Ryanair emphasized that its passenger number estimate of 168 million remained unchanged.
In December 2022, the group, which consists of Ryanair, Buzz, Lauda, and Malta Air, carried 11.5 million passengers, 21% more than in December 2021. The average load factor was 92%, an 11% growth Year-on-Year (YoY). In total, throughout the past 12 months, 160.4 million passengers flew with the low-cost carrier group, as the load factor averaged 92%.
Ryanair’s shares on the NASDAQ stock exchange rose 10% following the news on January 4, 2023, while the Dublin-listed company’s stock opened 3.6% higher on January 5, 2022.
On December 7, 2022, the group extended its current CEO Michael O’Leary’s contract until July 2028, giving the Irish executive a four-year extension. O’Leary will oversee Ryanair’s development as it tries to achieve its goal of carrying 225 million passengers by 2026 while also developing the group’s strategy until the end of the current decade.