Thomas Cook sees strong demand for travel to Turkey and Egypt

LONDON: Travel firm Thomas Cook reported an 8 percent rise in full-year earnings, helped by a turnaround of its German airline Condor and improved customer demand, adding that bookings for Turkey and Egypt in summer 2018 were already very strong.
The tour operator said on Wednesday underlying earnings before interest and tax were £330 million ($ 437.6 million) in 2016-17, a little ahead of an analyst consensus of £327 million.
Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said that the performance of Condor, which improved profits by £24 million in the year, was a highlight for the group’s airline business, and was especially encouraging in a year when carriers Air Berlin, Monarch and Alitalia have all gone into administration.
“The strong performance of our Group Airline in what has been a difficult year for European aviation is a particularly encouraging sign of our progress,” he said in a statement.
The company said that while bookings for next summer were at an early stage, the increase in demand for trips to Egypt and Turkey in 2018 would help alleviate some of the margin pressure the company has faced on competitive destinations in Spain, though it added that the British market remained challenging.
Thomas Cook said it was “well positioned” to achieve current market expectations for 2018.

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