TUI sees earnings at top end of range despite Tunisia attack

TUI sees earnings at top end of range despite Tunisia attack

TUI sees earnings at top end of range despite Tunisia attack

Picture taken on June 12, 2013 shows a Boeing 787 "Dreamliner" plane of Thomson Airways with the logo of tourism giant TUI at the Hanover airport in Langenhagen, central Germany. AFP Photo

Strong summer holiday demand offset the impact of the Tunisian beach massacre for TUI which said annual profit would come in at the upper end of its forecast range.

The world’s largest leisure tourism group, TUI said summer trading had been robust and it now expected underlying core earnings (EBITA) to rise by between 12.5 and 15 percent in the current financial year, against a previous forecast for between 10 and 15 percent.

European holiday companies have had to cope this summer with the impact of an attack on a beach massacre in Tunisia in late June that killed 38 people, 33 of whom were TUI customers. The Greek financial crisis has also affected tourist travel.

Cancelled holidays to Tunisia would cost between 35 million euros and 40 million euros ($39-44 million) this year, TUI co-chief executives Peter Long and Friedrich Joussen said.

TUI and rival Thomas Cook rushed to pull holidaymakers out of Tunisia after Britain and other countries told them to leave. Trips to the North African country have been cancelled until October, leaving TUI with empty hotels.

Long was not optimistic that TUI’s full holiday program in Tunisia would return any time soon.

“I sadly don’t think that we’re going to see a full reinstatement of the program in the near term,” he said.

When asked about the situation on some Greek islands, notably Kos, where there have been clashes between police and migrants, TUI’s Joussen said it was not affecting bookings at the minute.