Europe’s largest low-cost airline made 1.43 billion euros (£1.24 billion) in profit between April 2022 and March 2023 – equivalent to an average of almost £40 per second.
Ryanair said a “strong traffic recovery and favorable oil hedge” had turned around a previous year loss of 355 million euros (£309 million).
Average fares are 10 per cent higher than pre-Covid levels, with “ancillary sales” – an addition to the base fare – earning €23 (£20) from regular passengers.
The airline carried 168.6 million passengers for the entire fiscal year, up 74% year-over-year, which was hit hard by the Covid pandemic. The 2022-23 figure equates to an average of 462,000 passengers per day, with 93% of seats filled on regular flights – up from 82% the previous year.
More than 80 per cent of Ryanair’s fuel is “hedging” – purchased in advance at much less than market value – which has saved the Group the equivalent of overall profits during the year.
“Ryanair is fully staffed to operate its 22 summer schedule, while many competitors have canceled capacity (often for short periods) due to severe staff shortages,” the airline statement said. .
“Transition bookings and airfares for the summer of 23 are currently very high and we continue to encourage all customers to book early to avoid ‘close-in’ price increases.”
But airline bosses predict more air traffic control (ATC) strikes over the summer.
In anticipation of the next ATC disruption, we’ve invested heavily in our operations (increasing crew ratio, doubling the size of our operations centers), said the results statement. , enhance the day travel app and we continue to improve customer communications) to ensure that our passengers and crew continue to enjoy Ryanair’s industry-leading OTP [on-time performance] and reliability.”
It said it had achieved “strong market share gains in Italy, Poland, Ireland, Spain and across Europe” as other airlines reduced capacity..
Ryanair said the pay cuts imposed during the pandemic were “restored 28 months early by agreement for almost all cabin crew”.
Ryanair Group chief executive Michael O’Leary has backed the airline’s environmental record, saying: “Passengers switching to Ryanair (from legacy EU airlines) can reduce up to up to 50% of emissions per flight. Over the past year, we have made significant progress towards becoming net carbon neutral by 2050.
“We are campaigning to accelerate European ATC reform to eliminate avoidable flight cancellations/delays, which will significantly reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.”
Looking ahead, Ryanair’s statement said: “We are cautiously optimistic that full-year revenue will grow enough to cover our €1 billion. [£870m] higher fuel bills and still deliver modest year-over-year profit gains.
“This guidance remains very much dependent on avoiding adverse events like the war in Ukraine or, moreover, repeated Boeing delivery delays.”