Usit concerned about terrorism stopping people travelling

Student travel company records small net loss to end of October 2015

Student and youth travel company Usit made a small net loss in the year to the end of October 2015, as write-downs and exceptional items obliterated its operating profit for the period.

Accounts filed at the Companies Office show Usit Ireland Limited recorded an operating profit before depreciation and amortisation of €806,167, up 10 per cent on the previous year.

However, the depreciation and amortisation on the travel agent’s assets was calculated at €516,275, while exceptional items relating to restructuring costs arrived at €214,140, the accounts show.

As a result, it made a net loss of €3,727, compared with a profit of €180,138 the year before.


The group’s turnover of €5.8 million, earned from fees and commissions charged to its customers, was similar to its performance in the previous financial period.

Its gross turnover – the amounts invoiced to customers – arrived at €22.8 million, which was again steady on the year before. No dividend was paid.

The group’s principal activity is described as the distribution of travel and work-abroad programmes in Ireland to the student and youth sector.

Principal risks

The threat of terrorism is listed among the “principal risks and uncertainties” faced by Usit, alongside an uncertain economic climate, competition from rivals, and the possibility of losing business to new entrants to the market.

“Despite a challenging economic environment, the group continues to trade robustly as it adapts its offerings to meet the patterns of youth who are seeking out work, study and educational opportunities abroad,” the directors said in a report accompanying the accounts.

During the accounting period, Usit provided €3.5 million to its parent company, Kinlay Group.

The company employed an average of 97 people during the year, up from 84 the previous year. However, its wages and salaries costs fell from €3 million to €2.8 million. Two-thirds of its staff are employed in sales.

Usit, based on Aston Quay in Dublin, dates back to 1959, when it opened for business as a part-time, two-person business. It later became synonymous with organising the summer J1 work and travel visas to the US.

The company says it aims to “provide the best opportunities for students and young people to travel when their responsibilities are at their lowest and curiosity at its highest”.

Laura Slattery

Laura Slattery

Laura Slattery is an Irish Times journalist writing about media, advertising and other business topics