Personal Finance

Virgin Atlantic on course for profit this year thanks to premium holidays and travel

Virgin Atlantic is on course to return to profitability this year, after posting record revenues of £3.1billion for 2023, chief executive Shai Weiss says.

He said that the airline, which was founded by Sir Richard Branson and is 49 percent owned by US operator Delta, had benefited from strong demand for premium leisure travel and holidays.

Its revenues last year rose 9.3 percent, while its losses before taxes and one off items dropped from £206million to £139million.

Weiss said: “A loss is never satisfactory; however, our performance and results illustrate that we made really good progress in 2023. The plan is working, and Virgin Atlantic is on course to return to profitability in 2024.”

The airline turns 40-years old in June and Weiss added that he believes 2024 marks a turning point for it, as it seeks to become sustainably profitable.

Last year, Virgin Atlantic carried 5.3million passengers, compared with 4.4million in 2022. Prior to the pandemic, it carried 5.9million passengers.

Record passenger revenues of £2.4billion, up £323million versus 2022, helped it offset a drop in its cargo revenues, which fell 48% to £196million, due to markets normalising post pandemic.

Elsewhere, low cost airline Ryanair said that carried 13.6million passengers last month, an increase of 7.9 percent on March 2023. Rival Wizz Air said it flew 4.8million, an increase of 12 percent.