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Flight Centre booms as the post-Covid world makes travel a priority

Business

Flight Centre shares jumped almost 5 per cent after the company revealed it was back in the black with an upgraded profit guidance that was a $480 million turnaround on 2022.

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The company has boomed since the end of Covid restrictions as Australians jumped at the chance to travel again.

The company’s total transaction value, which is the sum of all bookings through its channels, was expected to be about $22 billion, which was a 115 per cent increase on 2022 and the company’s second strongest full year behind 2019.

Flight Centre said it now expected its underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation would be between $295 million and $305 million for the June year.

This was a 7 per cent increase on the midpoint in the company’s previous target and big jump on last year’s $183 million loss.

The corporate travel division also outperformed and also produced record TTV. Leisure travel was expected to be $10 billion, following what the company described as a strong and consistent recovery during the second half.

Managing director Graham Turner said the company was pleased with the result and in terms of its leisure travel Flight Centre had emerged from Covid as a more productive, more efficient and more diverse business.

“Looking ahead, our expectations are that leisure travellers will continue to prioritise holidays and experiences over other areas of discretionary spending, as we have seen in the past and as evidenced by the consistet year-on-year growth in outbound travel in large and important markets like Australia,” he said

“In corporate, we expect that the large volume of new business that we continue to win –  from both competitors and accounts that were previously unmanaged – will offset the impact on TTV flowing from lower-than-normal client spend.”

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