Ryanair profits rise 11% despite pilot rostering fiasco

"We see no reason to alter our full-year profit after-tax guidance which remains in a range of €1.40bn to €1.45bn", said Ryanair on Tuesday.

The airline is expecting a full-year profit of up to €1.45 billion following €1.29 billion in profit in the six months to the end of September.

Total operating revenues - continuing operations for the half-year period grew 7 percent to 4.43 billion euros from 4.13 billion euros a year ago.

Ryanair flew 72.1 million passengers, also 11 per cent more than the 64.8 million that travelled with it in the six months to September 30 2015.

This would mean traffic of 129 million for the full year, two million fewer than had been expected.

Despite various disruptions and having to cancel up to 20,000 flights this year, Ryanair (LON:RYA) is still confident in making record-breaking profits this year.

Ryanair has seen over 2 billion euros (1.76 billion pounds) knocked off its share price since it announced the first wave of cancellations on September 15, an emergency measure to free up standby pilots to ensure the smooth operation of its fleet of 400 planes.

Fares fell 5 percent in the fiscal first half, compared with an initial forecast for an 8 percent slide, and are set to drop by 4 to 6 percent in the second six months, better than an earlier prediction of 5 to 7 percent, Ryanair said.

Chief operations officer Michael Hickey has resigned over the mishap.

Increases in pay will cost around 100 million euros per year if accepted by pilots in all of the company's bases, it said.

The airline also underlined its concern about flight disruption if there is no industry agreement before September next year, and that it was anxious that the UK Government "continued to underestimate the likelihood to flight disruption to/from the UK".

Meanwhile, Ryanair said it was responding to the opportunities created by the collapse of rivals such as Monarch, Air Berlin and Alitalia in the over-crowded European airline market and believed other "financially troubled" EU airlines would follow them.

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