EasyJet expects profits for this year will come in slightly above its previous forecast after lower Icelandic volcanic ash costs and better demand for European short haul flights.
Large scale disruption caused by unofficial European air traffic controller strikes will cost £6 million in compensation to passengers for cancelled flights, the carrier revealed in a third quarter statement.
But this will be offset by a £5 million reduction in the cost of the Icelandic volcanic disruption to £60 million from £65 million.
Total revenue per seat for the quarter ended September 30 increased by 6% over the same period last year after a good performance on UK to European beach and city routes.
“Overall, easyJet now expects to deliver a pre-tax profit for the year to September 30 slightly ahead of the £150 million that was the top end of our previous guidance range of £100 million to £150 million,” the carrier said.
Chief executive Carolyn McCall said: “This robust financial performance in a tough trading environment is a tribute to EasyJet’s unique blend of the lowest prices to the most convenient airports.
“The significant disruption caused to millions of passengers across Europe, however, demonstrates the urgent need for European governments and the European Commission to modernise Europe’s outdated system for air traffic control providers and to end the ongoing strike action.”
The airline saw September passenger number rise by 8% year on year to 4.7 million with an improved load factor of 89.3%.
The carrier will issue its full year financial results for the 12 months to September 30 on November 16.