With rising airline ticket prices, the online travel agency is attributing some of its success to its subscription product that gives travelers access to cheaper deals.
Spain’s eDreams Odigeo said on Tuesday the number of bookings made on its various online platforms was rising faster than across the wider industry, boosting its profitability.
Europe’s largest online travel booking company said bookings during the first half of the company’s fiscal year that ends on March 31 were 48 percent higher than in 2019, the year before the Covid-19 pandemic grounded the global travel industry.
Bookings in October and early November were still a hefty 45 percent higher than in 2019, despite “adverse macroeconomic trends,” the company said.
CEO Dana Dunne and chief financial officer David Elizaga attributed the company’s good health in part to higher airline ticket prices spurring travelers to seek out bargains through eDreams.
“In times of economic crisis, conflicts or even natural disasters, the pleasure traveler always showed his wish to keep travelling. Now, it’s no different and we expect the surge to continue,” Dunne said in an interview, while Elizaga noted that global air tickets sales were still a fifth below pre-pandemic levels.
eDreams was the first travel group to introduce customer subscriptions, a fairly common practice in other industries.
The number of subscribers paying around $57 a year for access to cheaper deals stood at 3.8 million in early November, 31 percent higher than in May.
The company’s net loss in the July-September period narrowed to $10.45 million from $14.16 million a year earlier, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 26 percent to $21.35 million.
The company reiterated its 2025 EBIDTA target of $187.43 million, aiming for 7.25 million subscribers by then.
(Reporting by Inti Landauro, editing by Louise Heavens, Kirsten Donovan)
Photo credit: The agency had 3.8 million subscribers in early November, 31 percent higher than in May. Natalya Zaritskaya / Unsplash