Smartwings Saw A 90% Drop In Revenue During 2020

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The Czech Republic has been hit hard by the ongoing travel restrictions, and its airlines are suffering. Smartwings Group, the owner of Smartwings and Czech Airlines brands, suffered an 81.5% drop in passenger numbers and a 90% fall in revenue in 2020 when compared to 2019 figures. Nevertheless, it remains the largest airline at Václav Havel Airport Prague.

Czech Airlines is part of the Smartwings Group. Photo: Kiefer via Wikimedia Commons[1]

Smartwings sees 81.5% fewer passengers

The ongoing pandemic has caused an unprecedented decline in passenger figures for the Smartwings Group, the largest Czech airline and the owner of Czech Airlines.[2]

Through all of 2020, the Smartwings Group airlines carried just 1.8 million passengers. This represents a decline of 81.5% compared to 2019. The 1.8 million consists of 1.3 million passengers who flew on scheduled and charter services of the eight Smartwings Group airlines, and a further 451,000 passengers who flew on board Smartwings aircraft but for different airlines, under ACMI agreements.

Dire figures but no state aid

The number of the group’s flight operations decreased by 78.4% this year. Commenting on these dire figures, the CEO of Smartwings, Roman Vik, said:

“Early last year, Smartwings Group seemed to be heading for the best results in its history. Instead, it had to face an unexpected and unprecedented aviation industry crisis. A dramatic decline in demand caused by the extraordinary circumstances forced us to adopt severe austerity measures and take many radical steps.

SmartWings Boeing 737-800 taxiing at Corfu airportSmartWings Boeing 737-800 taxiing at Corfu airport
Smartwings received no state aid. Photo: Getty Images

As Simple Flying reported last year, Czech Airlines did not start flying until May 18th.[3] After the state of emergency was lifted in the Czech Republic and the wider region, the Smartwings Group did not manage to reach even 20% of its 2019 levels on a month-by-month basis.

Prior to the pandemic and before the existing travel restrictions that have had such a negative impact on the group’s finances, both Smartwings and Czech Airlines were profitable airlines.

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