EasyJet announced this morning that last month’s drone chaos at Gatwick airport has cost it about £15m.
It paid out £10m in “customer welfare costs” and said it had lost £5m of revenues due to flight cancellations.
easyJet has delivered a good performance in the quarter with robust customer demand driving passenger and ancillary revenue which is in line with expectations. Underlying revenue per seat was positive, including good ancillary revenue growth. This was offset, as expected, by the impact from last year’s one-off revenue benefits, the dilutive impact of flying at Tegel and new accounting standards delaying the recognition of revenue. easyJet has made good progress with its cost and operational performance but both were affected by the impact of drone activity at London Gatwick over the Christmas period.
Commenting; Johan Lundgren, easyJet Chief Executive said:
“easyJet has made a good start to the 2019 financial year with robust customer demand and ancillary sales, driving solid revenue generation. This was underpinned by good operating and on-time performance across the network, with the exception of the disruption caused by the Gatwick closures due to drone sightings. There has been be a one-off cost impact from this incident, but underlying cost progress is in line with expectations. I am proud of the way our teams worked around the clock to mitigate the impact of the incident and looked after affected customers.
“Recognition of the easyJet brand continues to grow. We made good progress on our strategic initiatives; holidays, business, loyalty and data during the quarter.
“For the first half of 2019, booking levels currently remain encouraging despite the lack of certainty around Brexit for our customers. Second half bookings continue to be ahead of last year and our expectations for the full year headline profit before tax are broadly in line with current market expectations.”