TUI is optimistic – but then it always is!

By | Category: Travel news

Following on from the sales figures from On the Beach last week, TUI announced yesterday that 2.8 million holidays had been sold but that bookings were down 44% compared to this time last year.

Will TUI get your booking? Will you book a summer overseas holiday?

But this 44% figure includes those redeeming vouchers and probably those that rolled their holidays over from last year to this.

Similarly, as with On the Beach, it is unsurprising that bookings are down. Last year we had no idea how devastating travel would be affected by the pandemic so you aren’t real comparing apples with apples.

TUI says that it expects to run at about 80% of its capacity during the summer months and it is clearly pinning its hopes on the vaccination campaigns.

It doesn’t say where its bookings for the summer are going to but I we can assume that Spain is still the most popular destination

As it has shown throughout the pandemic it is an optimistic company but how realistic are its forecasts? And do we holidaymakers believe what it says?

In the UK, the vaccination rollout is way ahead of the company’s other main market – Germany – and the company highlighted the importance of the UK to its plans. Wil EU countries catch up because surely the Uk is only going to allow travel to destinations where a similar level of cases exists. It won’t wont us travelling to places whether there is a high number of cases and few vaccinations have been carried out.

Restrictions on travel to countries with the South African or Brazilian variant might last throughout the summer.

With a three month gap between jabs, anyone not jabbed by the end of May won’t receive their second one until the end of August – too late to go away for the summer.

The company also has bad news for the holidaymaker. It said that prices were up 20% over those from summer 2019.

Are these higher prices due to the additional costs incurred in carrying out sanitisation and social distancing measures? Are the due to higher hotel charges as accommodation providers seek to claw back the large amounts of money they have spent is surviving the  last twelve months? Are tour operators thinking that holidaymakers have been so starved of travel that they will pay almost anything to get away?

The company is banking on the fact that there will be summer holidays able to be taken abroad because it still has no domestic holiday offers available and, at present, that seems a chancy decision especially since the company says that it expects people to book their holidays later than usual.

For the holidaymaker, seeing amount of money that the company has had to raise in order to survive the pandemic, they might wonder whether it is safe to book with a company so much in debt. The answer must be yes give that its holidays are ATOL bonded so if the very worst happens, their cash will be protected  even if their holiday might not be.

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