Turkish Airlines
Turkish Airlines has recovered from the pandemic and overcome recent industry troubles such as staff shortages well, even managing to bring in traffic numbers higher than 2019. | © Nicolas Economou / Getty Images

Turkish Airlines announced astounding profits for the June Quarter of 2022, exceeding all expectations and trailing in front of its European competitors. A combination of tactical business decisions made in both pre-covid and post-covid periods, alongside strong leadership and resilient staff, have ensured the airline stays on top.

An impressive June quarter

The airline had a 43% increase in revenue from 2019, reaching $4.5 billion. Passenger traffic jumped by 12% whilst cargo revenues skyrocketed by 171%, culminating in a total of $1.1 billion. Turkish Airlines achieved a net profit of $576 million and an operating profit of $520 million.

The first quarter also highlighted an upward trajectory, as Turkish Airlines achieved a total revenue of $3.1 billion, surpassing its net income in 2019 during the same period.

A Turkish Airlines B737 after landing. Photo by Nickyhardinguk.
A Turkish Airlines B737 after landing | © Nickyhardinguk.

Part of this success goes to the addition of five new locations, spanning three continents and reaching new economic hubs; Juba, South Sudan; Milan’s Bergamo airport; Rize, Turkey; Bukhara, Uzbekistan, and Tivat, Montenegro. Most of these airports are unserved by European competitors.

Additionally, Turkish Airlines made the controversial decision to continue flying passengers into Russia despite the ongoing conflict between the nation and Ukraine. It transports customers into 10 cities in the country, and as the only major airline to do this, is benefiting hugely on the commercial end.

Speaking to Forbes magazine, Turkish airlines Chairman Ilker Ayci stated,

‘Before the pandemic, we were the airline that flew to the most countries and international destinations in the world and it was vital to maintain our robust route network and provide connectivity during these uncertain times. This domination of the international market has given us an advantage at a time when there are state restrictions, the demand is seriously narrowed and the plans change instantly.’

Turkish airlines sustainable aviation fuel
With flights to 120 countries, Turkish Airlines flies to more countries than any other airline. Increasing its use of sustainable aviation fuel will be a game-changer. | © Marco Macca / Travel Radar

Withstanding the covid-curse

Before jumping into what was arguably a successful period for Turkish Airlines, it is import to note how they were still affected in mid to late 2020. They ended the year having suspended a number of flight destinations and losing about 68% of its traffic. Stringing from that era, Turkish Airlines was also affected by the global rise of oil, and in 2022 spent $1.8 billion in fuel expenses- an increase of 86%!

Despite that, however, In 2020, they flew over 28 million passengers (more than double of its closest competitor) and ending the year as Europe’s busiest air-carrier. Ayci stated that through postponing or cancelling company investments, increasing cargo operations and, unlike many European airlines, retaining all staff during this period aided in keeping the Turksih afloat. On the latter issue he noted:

‘While other airlines faced layoffs, we did not part ways with any of our colleagues during the process. We believe that Turkish Airlines’ most important assets and values are our colleagues and hospitality.’

Turkish Airlines
| © AFP

The future is limitless

Turkish Airlines is expecting to far exceed 2019 revenues by the end of the year. It plans to also increase the number of passengers they carry as well as the destinations its fleet can reach, further touching key states across the world.

What flight will you be taking soon? And why not on the ever-adaptable Turkish Airlines?


  1. Travelled with them a number of times in economy and the whole experience onboard is so far ahead of airlines like BA (who have tumbled to the bottom ) from customer service, seat pitch, free meals and drinks and IFE….The majority of European airlines trail Turkish Airlines by some distance….


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