Aer Lingus has reported operating profits of €29.1m for the three months to the end of June, down 8.2% on the €31.7m reported the same time last year.

Revenues rose by 6.2% to €398.2m from €374.8m for the three month period, while average fare revenue per seat was up 4.8% with growth on both its short haul and long haul services.

Aer Lingus said that its half yearly operating loss rose to €16.4m from €4.4m.

This was due to once off factors including contract flying start-up costs, planned changes to the long haul fleet, maintenance costs, foreign exchange and weaker trading on UK routes.

It pointed out that the first half of its financial year is seasonally loss making.

Revenues for the six months to the end of June rose by 5% to €657.9m from €626.3m with passenger numbers up 1.3% to 4.570 million.

Total retail revenue rose by 3.1% to €87.1m on the back of both increased spend per passenger and a higher number of passengers carried. Online booking fees, seat selection, excess baggage charges and the airline's ''fare family'' offer drive the increase.

The airline said that bookings for the second half of the year were ahead of the same time last year, but added that the recent warm weather in Ireland has negatively impacted bookings in July.

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Aer Lingus chief executive Christoph Mueller noted that all of the airline's key revenue metrics trended positively with passenger numbers up 1.3%, its load factor rising by two points and growth in fare revenue per seat across short and long haul.

The airline expanded its long haul capacity by 16.3% in the second quarter, while it also managed to sell most of the additional seating and achieved a load factor of almost 95% in June.

''We maintain our guidance that 2013 operating profit, before net exceptional items, will be broadly in line with 2012,'' Mr Mueller said.

In its results statement, the company said that it had reduced its dependance on the Irish market by focusing on serving demand in Europe and the US. It noted that in the first half of this year about 60% of its total transatlantic bookings were sourced from the US market, while about 48% of its total ticket sales were generated outside of Ireland.

Fuel costs in the first six months of the year rose by 44.% to $229.4m and the company said that by the end of June, it had hedged 83% of its expected fuel requirement for the rest of the year at $974 per metric tonne.

Staff costs rose by 4.7%, while airport charges increased by 2.4% to €172.6m due to price increases at some of its most significant airports including Heathrow and some Spanish and Italian airports.

The airline's chief executive said that Aerl Lingus continues to focus on its cost base..

Christoph Mueller said the company was conscious that certain planned cost saving initiatives have not had effect as quickly as we had initially hoped.

''However, the voluntary severance programme we outlined at Q1 seeking a headcount reduction of 100 has been oversubscribed with expressions of interest. We expect the benefits of this programme will start to take effect towards the end of the current year with full year effect in 2014,'' he added.