TUI has claimed that it is on track to sell an extra two million seats for summer 2020. A big reason for this is the recent collapse of one of its biggest rivals, Thomas Cook.
Now that Thomas Cook is no longer running, they are in the best position to appeal to the same markets. UK travellers will be looking for a reliable alternative and TUI will likely come up on top.
TUI has proactively rushed to claim hotels left behind by Thomas Cook. The company has now added over 130 hotels previously owned by Thomas Cook to its portfolio. Some 56 of these are exclusive to its customers.
The Canary and Balearic islands should benefit from the effort that the company is putting in, with Mexico and Turkey likely to be other winners.
Furthermore, the company has hired new pilots and cabin crew from its former rival. There are a reported 100 vacancies for new pilots and 200 for new cabin crew. These staff will likely be fully trained and eager to return to work so training costs will be reduced massively.
Collapse of Thomas Cook will put TUI in a clearer position
TUI will benefit because it is now a clear standalone brand. Lines were blurred when they and Thomas Cook were in competition with each other. Each firm sold the other’s flights and hotels as part of holiday packages. Now with the ambiguity gone they have a clearer brand image.
The company had to cancel TUI and First Choice bookings featuring Thomas Cook flights for any customers that traveled between September 23rd and October 31st, at a large cost. However, the future benefits will likely more than make up for this shortfall. Travelers will now book with TUI because it offers ABTA protection.
Other companies will be looking to capitalize on the new capacity
However, the future for TUI is not all plain sailing. This is because other European companies have also been competing over Thomas Cook’s former operations. Hays Travel quickly took over Thomas Cook’s former stores and will now be competition in the UK.
International Airlines Group, Virgin Atlantic and Wizz Air have all expressed interest in the former company’s air slots. Package holidays are very much still in demand and it will be interesting to see how the UK market develops.