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In February, “Novaturas” group served 11.5 thousand customers and group’s revenue amounted to EUR 9.4 million. During the second month of the year the company has operated flights from the Baltic markets to Egypt, Tenerife, Madeira, United Arab Emirates, skiing resorts in France and Italy and long-haul destinations - Cuba, Mauritius, Thailand, Mexico, and Zanzibar. In January 2021 “Novaturas” group renewed flight programs from Lithuania and Estonia to Egypt and Tenerife.
The number of people served in February differs by 13.7% if compared with the same month of pre-pandemic 2019, and the difference of generated sales is even smaller - only 2.4%. In total, during January - February, the company served 22.2 thousand customers - 19.5% less than the corresponding time in 2019. Cumulative January - February turnover reached EUR 16.7 million and was by 12% lower than the corresponding time in 2019.
"Booking volumes generated in January and February have almost reached pre-pandemic levels, we have monitored a clear tendency of returning holiday planning in advance, flights in April and May have been rapidly filling up. Due to the breakout of Russia's war against Ukraine on the 24th of February the number of new reservations during the past few weeks dropped by almost half, people are making new purchases for trips that are 2 to 3 weeks prior the departure, but there are no cancellations. We are constantly monitoring the changing situation and we are ready to respond accordingly, if necessary, but for now we are proceeding with scheduled flight programs. It’s worth mentioning that sales in Estonia did not drop as strongly as in Lithuania or Latvia. The Estonians are planning their trips more actively and reacting to the whole situation a bit calmer”, Vitalij Rakovski head of “Novaturas” group introduces the results of February.
The ongoing war is also affecting the prices of organized holiday packages. "The prices for the aviation fuel has risen significantly already before the war. Up to the date, it is not yet clear exactly how much war situation will affect the prices of energy resources in the long run, but fuel prices continue to grow dramatically. Therefore, it will definitely influence the increase in prices”, the head of the company shares his insights.
Russia's aggression against Ukraine has also directly affected tourism companies operating in the Baltics, with sanctions imposed on tour operator “TUI Baltics”. According to the CEO, the general tendency to avoid companies of Russian and Belarusian capital is especially reflected in the Lithuanian market: "This factor is becoming of great importance for the Lithuanians both in terms of values and because these businesses may face significant business continuity risks", says V. Rakovski. The founders of the company who are still minority shareholders of “Novaturas” are citizens of Lithuania. The group does not operate in Russia and Belarus. Funds received from the clients for the planned trips are secured by insurance contracts and guarantees of the European Union financial institutions.
The company continues the cooperation with the embassies and consulates to help repatriate the Ukrainian citizens trapped abroad to the Baltic states.