Easyjet has announced that it plans to cut up to 4,500 of its staff and reduce its fleet in preparation for an expected slowdown in flights in the aftermath of Covid-19.
Shares in easyJet rose 6% to 751 pence, their highest level since mid-March.
Easyjet chief executive Johan Lundgren said: “We realise that these are very difficult times and we are having to consider very difficult decisions which will impact our people, but we want to protect as many jobs as we can for the long-term.
“We remain focused on doing what is right for the company and its long-term health and success, following the swift action we have taken over the last three months to meet the challenges of the virus. Although we will restart flying on 15 June, we expect demand to build slowly, only returning to 2019 levels in about three years’ time.
“Against this backdrop, we are planning to reduce the size of our fleet and to optimise the network and our bases.
“As a result, we anticipate reducing staff numbers by up to 30 per cent across the business and we will continue to remove cost and non-critical expenditure at every level. We will be launching an employee consultation over the coming days.
“We want to ensure that we emerge from the pandemic an even more competitive business than before, so that Easyjet can thrive in the future.”