UK travel and hospitality companies set to benefit from the easing of Covid restrictions rallied on the London stock market after Boris Johnson set out the government’s roadmap for ending lockdown in England.
Against a backdrop of rising hopes for a rapid economic recovery from the worst recession for more than 300 years, shares in companies among those hardest hit by lockdown, including airlines, travel firms and operators of retail, food and drink outlets at train stations, recorded the biggest gains amid growing hopes for a fast return to relative normality.
Shares in airlines and travel firms rose after a surge in holiday bookings on Monday night following Johnson’s announcement of a possible return to international travel from 17 May, subject to a government review.
EasyJet said flight bookings from the UK jumped 337% and package holiday bookings surged 630% compared with a week earlier, with Málaga, Alicante and Palma in Spain, Faro in Portugal and the Greek island of Crete among the top destinations. August breaks were the most popular, followed by July and September.
The budget airline ended the day up 4.5%, while the holiday travel firm TUI was up 3…