TUI AG said it has seen signs of pent-up demand since restrictions were eased but total summer bookings are still 68% below 2019 levels.
The travel agent has 4.2mln customers booked for the season, 1.5mln more than disclosed in its last market update in May, driven by customers in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Poland.
To cope with lower numbers, it reduced capacity to around 60% of 2019 levels.
Activity is supported by destinations that are doing well in terms of vaccine rollout and hospitalisation rates, such as the Balearics, Canaries and Greek islands.
The group has been offering cheaper COVID-19 testing packages exclusively for its customers, with prices as low as GBP20 in the UK.
TUI Cruises has been operating six of its seven Mein Schiff fleet since the end of July, with itineraries across the Baltic and the North Sea, the Spanish coast and the Mediterranean. Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has been operating its four-ship fleet since July too.
Bookings for 2022/2023 are currently in line with historical ranges, TUI noted, with good demand for its winter long-haul programme. Early sales for summer 2022 are ahead of pre-COVID-19 levels, supported by re-bookings and strong booking retention.
Available liquidity as of 9 August was EUR3.1bn, and the third quarter has seen its first cash break-even since the start of the pandemic, helped by a surge in bookings.
In the hotels & resorts segment, 283 hotels were open with an average occupancy rate of 48% and average revenue per bed of EUR70. Markets & Airlines flew 876,000 customers in the period.
Revenue in the quarter to 30 June was EUR650mln, with an underlying loss of EUR670mln and net debt of EUR6.3bn, down from EUR6.8bn in March.
Shares rose 4% to 344.97p on Thursday at the opening bell.