With entry restrictions eased by a large percentage of countries around the world this summer, passenger numbers saw a significant increase in September, especially for Ryanair Holdings PLC and Wizz Air Holdings PLC.
Ryanair flew a total of 10.6 million passengers in September, according to a recent report by the airline. Such statistics show that compared to last year’s figures, the numbers have more than doubled as during the same period the previous year it was 5.2 million air traffic, TheSchengen.com reports.
Meanwhile, the load factor improved to 81 percent from 71 percent. As a result, although the carrier reported that September’s numbers were down from 11.1 million passengers in August, it was up from 9.3 million passengers in July.
On the other hand, Wizz Air’s traffic during September was 3.0 million passengers or 91% compared to last year’s figures. At the same time, the load factor improved to 78.4 percent, compared to 64.6 percent last year.
Wizz Air announced new routes from Debrecen [in Hungary] to Brussels Charleroi [Belgium], Belgium and Kiev – Zuliani, Ukraine. New lines will be operating twice a week from mid-December 2021. In addition, Wizz Air has announced the restart of three routes from Debrecen to Tel Aviv, Moscow and Santorini. Besides the new services, Wizz Air now offers ten routes from Hungary’s second largest city,” the airline noted in this regard.
The increase came before UK authorities simplified their entry rules, using the red list instead of the traffic light system for travelers from other countries.
According to the UK government’s announcement, travelers arriving in the UK from countries hit hard by the virus recently, and who are listed in the red, will have to self-isolate for 11 nights in a quarantined hotel, at a cost of £2,285 per single passenger.
On Monday, Ryanair shares registered a 2.4 percent increase at €17.64 each in London, London South East reported. At the same time, shares in Wizz Air rose to 5,216.00 pence.
The announcement by the US authorities to lift the travel ban on vaccinated European travelers from November also positively affected the travel process to recover from the damage caused by the COVID-19 situation. Recently, German airline Lufthansa reported that booking flights from European countries to the United States has seen a marked increase.
Previously, Director General of ACI EUROPE, Olivier Jankovic, stressed that “for airports in Europe, the first six months of 2021 were actually worse than last year, with passenger volumes dropping by more than a third.”
He stressed that this decline was caused by travel restrictions imposed by European Union member states in an attempt to stop the spread of the virus.
Even amid the pandemic, some European airlines have managed to operate flights and maintain a large number of passengers during 2020.
TheSchengen.com previously reported that last year the following airlines saw the largest number of passengers; Ryanair, EasyJet, Lufthansa Group, Air France-KLM, IAG, Aeroflot Group, Turkish Airlines, Wizz Air, Turkish Pegasus Airlines and S7 Airlines.