The fact that many airlines are struggling because of the coronavirus crisis is obvious. Most companies are trying to ensure that their staff remain by placing them on furlough; unpaid or reduced-salary indefinite leave. For some, such as Wizz Air, this is not always possible.
Wizz Air, like many other aviation-related companies, has had to downsize its operations as a result of the coronavirus outbreak all over the world. Ticket sales have virtually stopped. Many countries are imposing restrictions that make it difficult or impossible to enter or leave a country. The Hungarian low-cost airline has already parked 90 aircraft so far. It concerns 55 Airbus A320s and 35 Airbus A321s. The total fleet consists of 111 aircraft. 21 of them are still actively repatriating passengers.
Wizz Air has made the difficult decision to dismiss no less than one-fifth of its staff. The airline will take 1000 employees off the payroll. However, the operator needs to make additional savings. For example, the salaries of the board members will be cut by 22% and pilots, office staff and cabin crew will lose 14%.
After this announcement, the company still has something remarkable to say. The lease contracts for 32 aircraft that have been in operation for some time will not be further extended. Instead, the company has some 270 orders for newer aircraft of the Airbus A320neo family. Deliveries will continue as usual, unlike other companies.
When the coronacrisis will end, Wizz Air intends to resume its plan of growth. The airline expects to grow again around 15% per year. Also plans for the start-up of Wizz Air Abu Dhabi continue.
Finally, CEO Jozsef Varadi announced that the company closed the financial year with a net profit of 280 million euros. He also expects that after the coronavirus outbreak people will fly again as before, but a new record will only be set in 2022.