Thomas Cook bookings down in wake of Paris attacks

Thomas Cook's revenue and bookings dipped in the three months to December, as tourists remained wary of travelling after the Paris attacks in November.

Thomas Cook: the firm's December mass-market travel campaign
Thomas Cook: the firm's December mass-market travel campaign

Bookings fell 2% year on year, while revenue was down to £1.4bn from £1.5bn the previous year.

Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said: "It is clear that the awful attacks in Paris and Istanbul impacted confidence, leading some customers to delay booking their holidays. 

"However we’ve seen clear signs of recovery in recent weeks: customers still have money in their pockets, and want to go on holiday.  In this uncertain geopolitical environment, we are also seeing more of our customers choose a package holiday, valuing the greater security it provides."

Thomas Cook has also cancelled flights to Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt until May this year, and to Tunisia until April.

The company's losses widened to £116m from £115m the prior year.

Fankhauser talked up the success of Thomas Cook's own brand offering, with sales to the travel company's hotels up 24% year on year.

He said: "We will continue to focus on delivering our strategy – strengthening our own-brand hotels and flights offering, and investing to ensure that customers who choose Thomas Cook get consistently excellent customer service."

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