Low-cost giant Wizz Air has posted a strong set of H1 financial results for the six-month period that ended on September 30th, 2022. Having seen growth across the board compared to the same period last year, the airline is eyeing major growth going forward, and plans to exceed pre-pandemic levels in the next six months.

The key figures

While Wizz Air made a first-half operating loss of €63.8 million ($63.2 million), it still has reasons to be cheerful. Indeed, as Reuters notes, the June – September period of H1 saw Wizz Air’s core earnings total €374 million ($370.4 million). This contributed to an overall €68.2 million ($67.6 million) profit in this quarter.

Returning to Wizz Air’s half-year figures, the carrier has generally increased its performance across most of the key metrics. For example, overall revenues have more than doubled compared to the same period last year, rising from €880.4 million ($872.1 million) to €2.194 billion ($2.173 billion). Meanwhile, the low-cost heavyweight’s load factor for the period jumped from 75.3% to 86.9%.

Wizz Air has consistently demonstrated an aggressive growth strategy in the last few years, despite the industry’s various challenges. In terms of its fleet, this has resulted in the number of aircraft rising from 144 to 168 in the last year. H1, this time round, saw it carry 26.5 million passengers, compared to 12.5 million last year.

Wizz Air Airbus A320

Photo: Wizz Air

Overcoming challenges

2022 was seen as a year for sustained recovery across the airline industry, with the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic now largely in the past. However, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine at the start of the year had the potential to stall this growth, particularly for an airline with a large Eastern European presence like Wizz Air.

However, it has also been able to overcome this hurdle. Indeed, commenting on the latest results, József Váradi, the airline’s Chief Executive Officer, stated that:

“Revenue per available seat kilometer improved from -10% during the first quarter to +11% during the second quarter, ahead of guidance, all measured versus the pre-COVID-19 quarters. This was driven by load factors recovering and improved yields, no longer held back by COVID-19 or the war in Ukraine. Wizz Air’s focus continues to be the combined approach of delivering growth while pricing for cost inflation.”

Wizz Air Airbus A321

Photo: Wizz Air

Exceeding pre-pandemic levels

Váradi also shared some of his aspirations for the winter season. With the last quarter of the first half having represented such a strong showing, Wizz Air is looking to build upon this to perform at a significantly higher level than it was before the pandemic. Looking to the future, the carrier’s CEO stated that:

“As we move closer to the winter 22/23 season, we are gearing up to operate c.35% higher capacity in the second half versus 2019 (normalized for COVID-19 impact in Feb-March 2020).”

As well as this strong planned capacity growth, Wizz Air is also eyeing further network diversification. Váradi notes that the winter will have “more inbound and outbound routes to the Middle East. We are expecting moderate counter-seasonal contribution in terms of traffic and revenues from these destinations.”

What do you make of Wizz Air’s latest set of financial results? Did you fly with the Hungarian low-cost carrier in the H1 period? Let us know your thoughts and experiences in the comments!

Source: Reuters

Source: simpleflying.com

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