EasyJet reported that continuous travel delays brought on by a lack of workers across the aviation sector cost them £133 million ($136 million) in April, May, and June, but things have since improved in July.
The low-cost airline is one of the European carriers that has suffered greatly in recent months from delays and cancellations because it was unable to rehire workers in time to meet the increase in demand brought on by the pandemic.
EasyJet said that during the third quarter of its fiscal year, which ended on June 30, 2022, it was unable to operate 5 percent of its anticipated schedule in a trading update on July 26, 2022.
It reported a headline loss before tax of £114 million for the quarter, which included a cost-effective disruption of £133 million.
The easyJet findings came a day after low-cost rival Ryanair announced a post-tax profit for the quarter ended June 30, 2022, stating that it had been justified in agreeing to pay cutbacks and keeping people on rather than cutting positions given the difficulties rivals had in rehiring staff.
EasyJet reported that July operations were “significantly improved” as a result of steps taken to remove flights from its schedule and restrictions imposed by two of its major airports, London Gatwick (LGW) and Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS).
“We have taken action to build the additional resilience needed this summer and the operation has now normalized,” chief executive Johan Lundgren said in the update.
Looking ahead, easyJet stated that it will continue to modify its timetable as necessary in order to ensure “smooth” operations throughout the summer.
Bookings for the October school break are currently at pre-pandemic levels, and capacity is at 95% of 2019 levels, according to EasyJet.
It anticipates that capacity will be roughly 90% of Q4’19 levels in the fourth quarter, which will end in September 2022, with load factors above 90%. Load factors, which measure how packed the flights were, were 88 percent in Q3.