Volaris to freeze net fleet growth from 2021
Volaris expects to take delivery of all aircraft it has committed to receive this year.
The carrier said in an investor update that aircraft already in production at the time Covid-19 started would be delivered in 2020. This represents seven Airbus A320neo-family aircraft.
But the carrier’s plan is to freeze net fleet growth in 2021, 2022 and 2023.
During the second quarter of 2020, the Mexican carrier returned one A319 to its lessor and incorporated one A320neo under a sale and leaseback transaction.
As of 30 June 2020, Volaris’s fleet comprised 81 aircraft including six A319s, 41 A320s, 18 A320neo aircraft, 10 A321s and six A321neo aircraft.
Volaris posted a MXN1.64 billion ($62.5 million) net loss for the second quarter, reversing a MXN119 million net profit in last year’s corresponding period.
Total operating revenues plunged more than 81% to MXN1.52 billion in the three months to 30 June 2020, compared with last year’s quarter.
In addition to the Covid-19 crisis impact, the carrier was hit by a 22% depreciation of the Mexican peso against the U.S. dollar year on year. However, Volaris said it benefited from a 10% average drop in oil prices over the 12-month period.
Since the Covid-19 crisis started, the ultra-low-cost carrier’s main objective has been to preserve liquidity. Volaris implemented a “liquidity preservation plan” which achieved a total of MXN6.1 billion ($266 million) through payment deferrals and cost reductions for 2020. Around MXN1.6 billion have been deferred to 2021. For the second quarter, the liquidity preservation plan brought MXN2.2 billion in benefits.
The carrier plans to operate approximately 70% of its capacity as measured by available seat miles (ASMs) in August versus the originally published schedule. This represents an increase regarding its capacity compared with the months of May, June and July 2020, where capacity operated represented 11%, 37% and 55% of its total operations versus the itinerary originally published for those months.