Air Berlin, Europe’s third-biggest low-cost airline, saw third quarter operating earnings increase as cost cuts helped its bottom line and more business travellers appeared to sign up for discount travel.
The three months to September saw an end to several quarters of worsening performance, following the takeover of two smaller rivals – DBA in 2006 and LTU in 2007 – that saw capacity and costs spiral.
A merger with Condor, a charter airline, was called off earlier this year.
The carrier this summer said it would shrink its fleet by 10 per cent to 120 aircraft, as well as reduce European and some long-haul routes. These moves helped boost seat-utilisation rates even as passenger numbers fell.