Airline predicts resurgence in demand for Turkiye post earthquakes


After a brief decline following the deadly earthquakes in February, SunExpress, a joint venture between Turkish Airlines and Lufthansa, reported on Tuesday that summer bookings to Turkey soared as of this month.

This year, the airline anticipates carrying over 12 million passengers, Chief Executive Max Kownatzki told Reuters outside of an Istanbul news conference.

Bookings decreased by 50% within days of Turkiye’s devastating earthquakes, which claimed more than 48,000 lives and left millions homeless.

“We noticed large declines in demand in the first week following the earthquake, with the foreign demand falling by around 50% to 52%. Yet, demand increased in week two. Approximately 10 days after the hit, demand completely returned,” according to Kownatzki.

According to data from the beginning of March, we had 60 percent more reservations made in advance than we had the previous year.

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The Antalya-based SunExpress carried 10.7 million passengers last year, largely between Turkey and European countries, with an 85 percent load factor, exceeding pre-pandemic levels, according to data given at the news conference.

Turkiye, experiencing high inflation and a persistent current account deficit, hopes to collect $56 billion in tourism receipts this year.

Kownatzki stated that Sunexpress anticipated this year’s sales to be 1.63 billion euros ($1.75 billion) and profitability before interest and taxes to be 80.1 million euros. EBIT was 85 million euros last year, compared to revenue of 1.49 billion.

The unpredictability of inflation, fuel costs, and foreign exchange rates is all very significant. We are cautious in that assumption as a result, he continued, stressing that the company used good hedging strategies for both foreign exchange and gasoline.

He added that Sunexpress will fly with a fleet of 66 aircraft this season and that it will raise its passenger capacity by 13% while also introducing 26 new routes.



Salma Hussain is an MBBS doctor who loves to write on health-related topics. Apart from this, writing on sports and entertainment topics is her hobby. She is playing the role of an important writer in Arab Post.

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