Wizz Air outlines measures against coronavirus

Wizz Air outlines measures against coronavirus

Wizz Air (LON:WIZZ) announced on Wednesday the measures it will follow to limit the impact of the evolving coronavirus outbreak.

Shares in the airline were trading over 4% higher on Wednesday.

As the coronavirus continues to spread, many companies have issued warnings concerning the impact it will have on their respective businesses.

Wizz Air said on Wednesday that demand for air travel within Europe has been hit by the outbreak, particularly in areas that have a high number of cases.

As a result of the lower demand for flights, Wizz Air has adjusted its flight schedule – mainly to destinations within Italy – between March and April.

Italy is now the worst-affected country outside of Asia with over 2,000 cases.

The airline added that it is partnering with relevant authorities and following the guidelines given by the World Health Organisation and EASA to deliver safety.

Wizz Air outlined the measures it has taken to limit the impact of the virus on its business. These include significant reductions in overhead and discretionary spending and leveraging staff across its network, allowing it to pause recruitment and non-essential travel.

The airline continued to add that it is working with suppliers to reduce cost. Depending on whether the outbreak continues to impact demand, the company also said that it is considering further adjusting network capacity in the magnitude of 10% during the first quarter of F21.

“Our ever-disciplined attitude to cost enables Wizz Air to partly offset some of the headwinds due to the COVID-19 outbreak, which have driven a temporary decline in demand and an increase in the cost of disruption as we put the well-being of passengers and crew first,” József Váradi, Wizz Air Chief Executive, said in a company statement.

“Wizz Air’s ultra-low cost business model and our strong balance sheet and liquidity provide a solid foundation and a significant competitive advantage in the current challenging environment for airlines, making us a structural winner in the aviation sector in the long term,” the Chief Executive continued.

The Chief Executive said: “We are uniquely positioned for long-term value creation as Europe’s lowest cost, lowest emission airline and the market leader in the growing CEE market. The continuous rollout of the game-changing A321neo aircraft means that we will enjoy further cost improvements, while also ensuring Wizz Air is the most environmentally friendly choice of air travel for our passengers. We will continue to drive profitable growth in order to achieve one of the highest profit margins in the industry.”

Shares in Wizz Air Holdings plc (LON:WIZZ) were up on Wednesday, trading at +4.43% as of 12:05 GMT.