Luton (AP) – British low-cost airline EasyJet wants to increase its summertime flight offering in light of loosened travel restrictions and rising passenger numbers. In the months from July to September, capacity on offer should reach 60 percent of the level from 2019, the rival to Europe’s largest low-cost airline Ryanair announced.
In the last third quarter (to the end of June) of the fiscal year, easyJet’s bid averaged just 17 percent of its pre-crisis level.
Doubts about flights to and from Great Britain
Recently, however, the number of passengers increased again from month to month. While easyJet had about 524,000 passengers in April, it was already 870,000 in May and about 1.6 million in June. And given the uncertainty created by the pandemic, she said, customers booked much more quickly. According to its own information, Easyjet has sold only 49 percent of its tickets for the current quarter. Two years ago at this point it was already 65 per cent. Customers are particularly keen on flights to and from the UK.
The highly contagious delta variant is still rampant in the UK and is rapidly increasing the number of infections. In addition, most foreign travelers must remain in quarantine for at least five days – only those arriving from a few countries included in the so-called “green list” and fully vaccinated UK residents can bypass the quarantine healthy. However, they must also take a PCR test at their own expense on the second day after entering the country. This means that the island is not an attractive travel destination for foreign tourists at present, and traveling abroad is still expensive and complicated for many locals.
Contested Obstacles When Traveling
“Great Britain is being left behind,” said easyJet chief Johan Lundgren. The rest of Europe is opening up and relaxing. He accused the British government of applying double standards when traveling and at home. “You can go to a very crowded nightclub without a mask and unvaccinated, but you can’t lie on the beach in Europe.” For many people, post-immigration tests have made travel expensive and complicated. Lundgren called on politicians to significantly expand the “green list” and revise the rules. But the delta variant is also prevalent in many European countries. Barriers to travel may become higher again elsewhere in the coming months.
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