EasyJet said on Wednesday it planned to cut flights to and from Madrid by 20 percent after ceasing to base aircraft and employees there, and would now review options for its eight aircraft and 310 crew members in the capital.
EasyJet, Europe’s second largest low-cost carrier, said in a statement it will no longer base crew and aircraft in Madrid from the winter of 2012/13 after the location had delivered the lowest returns of all its bases.
The firm said this was due to a combination of over capacity in the Spanish airline market, leading to low revenue per passenger, as well as rising airport charges. The airline will fly to Madrid from other European cities with higher returns.
“EasyJet remains committed to Spain, including Madrid, and will continue to fly to and from Spain out of its bases across Europe. While easyJet proposes to reduce its capacity to and from Madrid by around 20 percent in the next financial year, the reduction to and from Spain will be 7 percent,” it said.
After the proposed changes it said it expected to carry over 12 million passengers to and from Spain next year.
EasyJet said it was now reviewing a range of options for its eight Madrid based aircraft and 310 crew and added that all of its pilots and cabin crew would be offered a job in the airline’s other bases.
Restructuring costs would likely be offset by lower fuel prices, the group said, meaning that management’s pretax profit expectations for full-year to September 30 remained unchanged.