News

Clickair boss: Spanish market will see more budget airline consolidation

There will be more consolidation among low-cost carriers operating in the Spanish market, according to Alex Cruz, chief executive of Clickair, a budget carrier part-owned by Iberia.
 
Limited demand due to the economic downturn, together with over-capacity from a flood of market entrants, will mean more buyouts and closures in the Spanish market, he said during a debate at World Travel Market.


“We have all seen the cycle before and now everybody is adjusting their flights,” Cruz said. “There will be more consolidation, whether it is a Spanish carrier or not, I don’t know, but it will be one taking part in the Spanish market.”


Spanish low-cost carrier Spanair was withdrawn from sale by parent SAS Scandinavian Airlines in the summer after a year without attracting a buyer. It had suffered a fatal crash, with 154 deaths, at Madrid airport in August.


In September, Spanish-based Futura cancelled flights and began insolvency proceedings, blaming rising fuel costs.


Cruz said more stable low-cost airlines with better financial backing were expected to benefit from the closure of other carriers.


Meanwhile, in the long-haul low cost market, carriers would benefit from business travellers downgrading their flights from business class on established airlines, said Tim Clayton, Asia Air X commercial advisor.


Asia Air X has been trying to drive growth for low-cost long haul flights with innovative marketing, such as promoting surfing holidays on Australia’s Gold Coast to China’s burgeoning young professionals, he said.


* More WTM 2008 coverage at travelweekly.co.uk/wtm2008

Share article

View Comments

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.