Comair cautious about challenge of World Cup

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Categories : Travel news

Comair has reported that it performed "well during a difficult trading period of continued recession" in the six months to the end of December.

Reporting an attributable profit increase of 3% to R33-million, it said passenger volumes remained constant in a declining market while turnover declined due to lower ticket prices on the back of a lower fuel cost.

Passenger surveys conducted on both its brands confirmed high service levels, and "we achieved further improvement in our on-time performance. On the back of this we were able to increase our marketshare.

"We continued to invest in our affiliated businesses with on-line travel showing good growth over the period."

Comair warned that there were "no clear indications of economic recovery in the local market for air

travel, although we do expect the South African market to follow the first signs of recovery seen overseas."

The company said it had embarked on further expansion out of Lanseria to both Durban and Cape Town and was recently awarded further licences into Africa.

"While we are cautiously optimistic about higher volumes over the World Cup, this may be tempered by the difficulty in predicting patterns of demand and supply and the significant challenge this presents to pricing airline tickets for this month-long event."

Comair recently signed a purchase agreement with Boeing for eight new-generation B737-800 aircraft for delivery over the period 2012 to 2015 subject to certain financing arrangements being concluded. These eight aircraft will be in addition to two B737-800 aircraft recently acquired on operating lease and already flying in Kulula colours.

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