TUI says travel to Tunisia and Egypt still sluggish

Hotel News - 22/09/2011

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European holiday operator TUI Travel says that it expects its full-year results to be in-line with forecasts even though business in holidays to Tunisia and Egypt is still struggling to recover. TUI says a surge in late-summer bookings should offset the slow recovery it is seeing in demand for vacations in the North African nations hit by political unrest earlier this year.

The political instability in several countries of North Africa and the Middle East continues to put holidaymakers off travel to the region, says TUI, which operates the First Choice and Thomson travel chains. TUI reduced the number of holidays it marketed for Tunisia and Egypt this summer and boosted the holidays available to alternative destinations like Greece, Spain and Turkey.

In a statement issued on Thursday, TUI CEO Peter Long said the group was expecting business in holidays to Tunisia and Egypt to recover slowly and managed its capacity accordingly. TUI Travel shares, which have shed almost 50 per cent of their value this year on worries about consumer spending, continued their slump today in a stock market battered by global economic fears.

In May, TUI Travel said that the political trouble in Tunisia and Egypt had wiped 29 million pounds off the firm’s first-half profits. At the time, TUI said it expected to be able to address this fully in the second half.

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