At the halfway point of the summer vacation, Düsseldorf Airport is seeing gradually increasing traffic: While North Rhine-Westphalia’s largest airport reported around 100 flight movements a day at the start of the holiday, there are currently around 200 take-offs and landings.
Looking at August, the number of daily flight movements could increase to almost 300 – however, due to the still dynamic situation surrounding the corona pandemic, reliable forecasts are hardly possible. During “normal” summer vacation times, the airport records around 700 daily flight movements with up to 90,000 passengers. The airport of the state capital of North Rhine-Westphalia currently welcomes just under a quarter of the passenger volume that was common at that time.
In the coming weeks, some airlines are planning to expand their offer at the airport, resume old connections or even offer new ones. “This is an important signal,” says Thomas Schnalke, CEO of Flughafen Düsseldorf GmbH. “The desire to travel in our region is unbroken. Many yearn for individual freedom – and that is exactly what aviation stands for.”
Etihad is again the first airline to offer a long-haul connection from Düsseldorf and is now connecting Abu Dhabi with the NRW state capital twice a week with the Dreamliner. The airport also welcomes Air Dolomiti, a new airline: from July 31, it will fly to Verona twice a week. Two more airlines will expand their offer in the coming weeks: from August Eurowings has Bologna, Dublin, Leipzig, Nuremberg, Lyon and Porto in the flight schedule, Newcastle will be added in September. Ryanair / Laudamotion now heads for London Stansted, Barcelona and Dublin.
By the end of the summer vacation, almost 50 airlines had registered flights to over 110 destinations. In addition to the main tourist destinations in Spain, Italy and Greece, domestic and European destinations are currently on the flight schedule for the coming weeks. Eurowings, the largest airline in Düsseldorf, flies to more than 50 airports. And Condor, TUIfly, SunExpress and Ryanair/Laudamotion also offer numerous destinations from Düsseldorf.
Mask, distance and hygiene
The airport had prepared intensively for this special holiday start. In order to protect travellers and employees, the mask requirement and special hygienic measures apply in the terminal. The minimum distance must also be maintained. Where it cannot be adhered to due to the process, mouth and nose protection is sufficient as a measure.
Counters are equipped with protective screens, there are disinfectant dispensers for cleaning hands and increased cleaning intervals for the sanitary facilities. Trilingual announcements are made in the terminal and service personnel point out to travellers that the distance and hygiene regulations are being observed.
The airport has also set up clearly visible adjustments in the waiting areas at check-in, in front of security and boarding pass controls, gates and baggage claim areas. In coordination with airlines and handling partners, boarding and deboarding should also be rectified and planes should preferably be parked directly at the gate positions if the volume of traffic permits.
“The extensive package of measures with mandatory masks, distance rules and hygiene concept, which we implemented in close coordination with our partners in the terminal, proved its worth in the first few weeks,” says Thomas Schnalke. “Thanks to these far-reaching measures, confidence in aircraft as a means of transport has also increased. Our primary goal is the best possible protection against infection. At the same time, we are very happy that the vast majority of passengers are dealing independently with the special situation.”
Shops, restaurants and travel markets
With around 50 shops, there is also more choice in shops and restaurants than at the beginning of the summer vacation. At the arrival level and in Gate A, almost all restaurants and shops are open during the half-way through the holiday. But even in the departure area and in gates B and C, no passenger has to stay hungry, thirsty or without the right holiday accessories.
The over 40 providers in the travel market, “Germany’s largest travel agency”, have attractive offers for those who want to make a quick decision. The best possible protection of travellers is also the focus of the shops and restaurants. Mask requirement also applies here. Protective screens were installed where necessary and floor markings indicate compliance with the minimum distance.
The current opening times of the shops and restaurants and all other information can be found at www.dus.com.
July 16, 2020