Ryanair, Europe's largest low-cost airline, landed deep in the red in the past fiscal year due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on passenger numbers.
Ryanair posted a loss of 815 million euros (989 million dollars) over the 12 months that ended March 31, compared to a profit of just over 1 billion euros in the same period a year earlier, chief executive Michael O’Leary said in a presentation on Monday.
The airline's passenger traffic fell 81 per cent over the previous year, to 27.5 million.
For the current fiscal year, management believes in a result close to the break-even point, but would not risk a concrete forecast due to continuing uncertainty around the pandemic.
However, the overall expectation was that vaccination campaigns will be successful in Europe and governments will lift travel restrictions in time for the all-important summer season starting in July.
Looking for a rebound
Looking forward to the next 12 months, Ryanair sees a rebound in traffic in the second half of the year and expects total passenger numbers for the period to be at the lower end of its issued target range of 80 million to 120 million passengers.
In the current first fiscal quarter to the end of June, the figure is expected to be just 5 to 6 million.