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Berlin Brandenburg Airport delayed till 2013

by Matt Falcus

The opening of the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport is to be delayed till possibly April 2013 following delays in preparing the facility for its original 3rd June 2012 opening date.

Principal issues have come following tests with passengers which show that the throughput is only half of what is expected, and the number of check-in desks is vastly lacking.

The airport is also without sufficient fire cover, and facilities such as lounges, restaurants and retail are also not ready yet.

This has all come only three weeks before the main carriers at the airport – Lufthansa, Air Berlin and easyJet – were expected to begin their increased schedules from the new facility, having already started moving signage and equipment across from Tegel and Schonefeld airports, where they currently operate.

Lufthansa, who traditionally focus their hubs on Frankfurt and Munich, had announced a 40% increase in operations from Berlin with the opening of the new airport, and the basing of six Airbus A320 aircraft. The airline is now suggesting the airport doesn’t open until after the Easter holidays in April 2013. In the meantime, it will need to cram in the extra aircraft and routes from the existing Tegel Airport, which is vastly overcrowded, since it does not want to cancel the new routes (which have been selling well).
This is disappointing news from a country which prides itself on efficiency. I’ll do my best to keep you informed of developments and new opening dates when announced.Air Berlin, who will also increase the number of services from Berlin, has suggested that the new airport not open until the winter timetable begins at the end of October this year, to give the airport time to complete, and to then test it on the quieter timetable.

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1 comment

Matt Falcus May 17, 2012 - 2:14 pm

According to this link, the airport has now set 17th March 2013 as its opening date.

http://travel.usatoday.com/flights/story/2012-05-17/Berlin-airport-opening-delayed-further/55033840/1

The airport’s head of technical planning, Manfred Koertgen, was fired by the airport’s board of directors over the delay, German news agency dapd reported.

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