Tui Group today reported a “sustained strong performance” in the UK with summer revenue and bookings up by 5%.
Europe’s largest travel company remains confident of delivering between 12%-13% growth in annual profits [EBITA] for the year to the end of September.
Overall summer bookings were up by 1% due to a slump in demand to Turkey. Bookings excluding Turkey rose by 7% year-on-year.
This proved “the sustained strength in underlying demand for our package holidays and the flexibility of our model in our ability to remix capacity,” Tui said.
“We are continuing to build on our direct relationship with our customers, with controlled mix up one percentage point to 72% and online mix up two percentage points to 43%.”
Winter 2016-17 trading is described as being in line with expectations, with UK revenue up by 29% and a 22% rise in bookings driven by further long-haul expansion and a 14th Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.
Long-haul bookings for the winter are up 26%, in line with capacity increases, with Mexico, Dominican Republic continuing to grow, and the addition of new 787 destinations such as Cuba and Sri Lanka.
Medium-haul destinations such as the Canaries, Cyprus and Cape Verde are also performing well. This season also sees the first winter operations of the ship Tui Discovery based in the Caribbean.
The summer 2017 programme from the UK is 10% sold, with revenue up by 14% and bookings rising by 7%. The growth is being driven by sales of long-haul and cruise holidays.
Tui Group chief executive, Friedrich Joussen, giving a trading update ahead of reporting full hear results on December 8, said: “We are continuing to deliver our strategy as a content centric, vertically integrated tourism group.
“The summer 2016 season is almost fully sold, with a continued strong performance by the UK, Riu and Cruises, the launch this summer of two additional cruise ships and the opening of five additional hotels in our core brands.
“Winter 2016-17 is trading in line with our expectations, with further growth driven by long-haul.
“In addition, we are pleased to have announced the completion of the Hotelbeds Group disposal on 12 September and marketing of Travelopia – formerly part of Specialist Group – has commenced.
“As we approach our 2015/16 year end, we are therefore confident of delivering between 12% and 13% growth in underlying EBITA.
“This demonstrates the strength of our integrated business model and the success of our content centric strategy, as well as the continued delivery of our merger synergies.”