Lufthansa hopes to claw back its strike-related losses in the second half of the year, the German flag carrier said on Tuesday, pointing to a strong summer season with bookings up 16% compared with the previous year.

The first quarter is often a loss-making one for airlines, with fewer bookings. However, Lufthansa's losses have been compounded by ongoing strikes in Germany, which cost the group 350 million euros in the first quarter.

The airline confirmed its forecast of full-year adjusted earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of 2.2 billion euros ($2.3 billion), which it had revised down two weeks ago following a wave of costly industrial action sending shares down.

It added that earnings in the second quarter would be below the prior-year level.

But hopes that summer demand would make up for the losses from recent months are strengthening as Europe prepares for one of its busiest travel seasons since the coronavirus pandemic.

In the second half of the year, the group's operating result is expected to be higher than in the previous year, it said, adding that savings measures were planned at its core brand Lufthansa Airlines to stem heavy losses there from the strikes.

"We are now leaving the first quarter behind us, which was mainly impacted by strikes, and are at a turning point," CEO Carsten Spohr said.

"Our planes remain well-filled throughout. One thing is already clear: It will be another very strong summer," he added.

However, with lower capacity in the first half of the year, the group now expects a slower return to pre-crisis levels, tweaking its forecast capacity level for 2024 to 92% compared with a previous 94%.

Unit revenues are also set to drop slightly year-on-year in the second quarter as customers were deterred from short-term flight bookings in April and May because of the strikes.

(Reporting by Joanna Plucinska and Rachel More Editing by Miranda Murray)