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Travel Group Amadeus Says Bookings Are Recovering; Booking Holdings Says Its Quarterly Revenue More Than Tripled

Published on Aug 6 2021 10:53 AM in General Industry tagged: Booking.com / Amadeus / Hotel Industry / Booking Holdings Inc / travel booking

Travel Group Amadeus Says Bookings Are Recovering; Booking Holdings Says Its Quarterly Revenue More Than Tripled

Spanish travel booking group Amadeus has said that the number of air bookings it received continued to recover in the second quarter, picking up most notably in June, its best month since the COVID-19...

Spanish travel booking group Amadeus has said that the number of air bookings it received continued to recover in the second quarter, picking up most notably in June, its best month since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

Amadeus's air bookings by travel agents were still down 67.6% in the three months to June from the same period in 2019, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that marked an improvement on the 79.2% contraction recorded in the first quarter of 2021.

No figures were given for the second quarter of last year.

"Air bookings and passengers boarded have gradually improved each month and accelerated in June, which has been the best performing month since the start of the pandemic," chief executive Luis Maroto said in a statement.

International air bookings jumped worldwide ahead of the northern hemisphere's summer holiday season but demand is still fragile amidst COVID-19 mutations concerns, global airline industry body the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said earlier this month.

Passenger demand in June was still 60% lower compared with the pre-crisis levels in 2019, but increased almost three times from the same period of last year, according to IATA.

Amadeus said its second-quarter adjusted net loss narrowed 90% to €23.6 million, down from a year-earlier loss of €231 million, which was the company's first quarterly loss in a decade.

Analysts had expected a loss of €48 million, according to Refinitiv.

Amadeus has also confirmed it is on track to deliver its €550 million cost-cutting plan in 2021, €50 million more than a year ago.

It also said it expects its capex spending in the third and fourth quarters to be broadly stable from 2020.

The company, which sells online booking software to airlines and travel agents, closed the second quarter with available liquidity of €3.36 billion, compared to the €3.80 billion at the end of March.

Booking Holdings Inc

Meanwhile, online travel agency Booking Holdings Inc has said that its quarterly revenue more than tripled and trounced estimates, driven by strong demand in Europe and the United States as more people planned their long-delayed getaways.

Shares of the company, down 6% for the year, rose nearly 4% in aftermarket trading on a smaller adjusted quarterly loss, helped by vaccine rollouts and easing travel restrictions.

The travel industry has been witnessing a quicker-than-expected return in demand, with economies rebounding from a pandemic-led slowdown.

However, the highly transmissible COVID-19 Delta variant that has led to a rise in cases in several countries could thwart the recovery.

The United States has decided to keep existing travel restrictions despite months of lobbying by the airlines.

Connecticut-based Booking said Asia, where vaccinations were low and cases high, was the least recovered region in July and continues to be down significantly from 2019 levels.

It said pandemic fears are driving people away from crowded hotels to alternative accommodations such as home stays, adding nearly one-fourth of the listings on its Booking.com platform were for such accommodations at the end of the quarter.

"People are looking at alternative accommodation more than they did in the past. Going forward, that will continue," chief executive officer Glenn Fogel told Reuters.

Room nights, a measure of occupancy at any property, in the second quarter jumped 59% from the previous three months, driven by strong demand in Europe and the United States.

While adjusted net loss narrowed to $105 million from $443 million a year earlier, Booking posted a bigger-than-expected loss of $2.55 per share, compared with estimates of $2.04, as operating expenses nearly doubled.

Revenue soared to $2.16 billion, beating Wall Street estimates of $1.90 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

News by Reuters, edited for Hospitality Ireland by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.

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