Lindblad Eyes Charter Air Plan; Cuts Cash Burn; More

Lindblad Ship

Lindblad Expeditions has cut its monthly cash burn from $30 million to $15 to $10 million with its ships laid up, according to executives speaking on the company's first quarter earnings call on Friday.

Company leadership said they have the cash to survive through 2020 and into 2021 without running a single expedition if need be, having significantly reduced ship and land-based expedition costs including crew payroll, land costs, fuel and food. 

Sven-Olof Lindblad, president and CEO, noted he was working on procuring reliable COVID-19 tests.

In addition, certain itineraries that could start as soon as the third quarter of 2020 will utilize charter aircraft to get guests to ships, Lindblad said, as the company has a plan in place with a charter air partner. 

"We need very little external logistical support," Lindblad noted, explaining the company has less port stops than a mainstream cruise line, and does not need shore excursion infrastructure such as busses. "Starting up and reactivating requires a tiny fraction of what the cruise industry needs."

Bookings for the back half of 2020 are ahead of 2019, said Craig Felenstein, CFO, also noting new bookings were still coming in for 2021 and beyond.

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