Peterborough holiday giant Thomas Cook takes cautious view of the year ahead

Thomas Cook.
Thomas Cook.

Peterborough’s Thomas Cook says it remains cautious for the year ahead despite a surge in summer holiday bookings.

Revenue at the company, based in Westpoint, Lynch Wood, rose by one per cent to £1.6 billion in the three months to December 31 last year.

We remain cautious for the rest of the year given the uncertain political and economic outlook.

Peter Fankhauser, chief executive

In its first quarter results, it said its summer 2017 trading is positive with overall bookings up nine per cent.

Its summer programme is now 31 per sold.

Bookings for holidays in Greece are up more than 40 per cent which has helped offset a fall in bookings to Turkey following terror outrages.

Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said: “In preparation for the summer season, we have expanded our holiday offering to Greece and a number of smaller destinations across Europe, and I’m pleased that this early action is paying off.

“Bookings to Greece are currently up by over 40 per cent, while demand for destinations such as Cyprus, Bulgaria, Portugal and Croatia is also strong.

“These positive trends are making up for continued weak demand for Turkey.

He said: “We remain cautious for the rest of the year given the uncertain political and economic outlook.

“It is still relatively early in the selling cycle for summer but based on the group’s current trading performance we continue to expect our operating result in this financial year to be in line with current market expectations.”

Its figures show group revenue increased by £14 million to £1,618 million, due to growth in sales of holidays to Spain, Greece and long haul destinations, together with new seat-only routes. This eased the impact of reduced sales to Turkey and Egypt.

Gross profit of £357 million was £4 million higher than last year.