After being delayed by nearly a decade, Berlin – the historic and picturesque German capital – inaugurated Brandenburg Airport on Oct. 31, with its first, commercial flights scheduled for Nov. 1. The city’s brand new airport will replace Berlin’s aging Tegel Airport. Once all of the airlines gradually relocate operations by 8 November 2020, Tegel Airport will be closed. All the airlines will relocate to terminals one and five, while terminal two opens in spring 2021. Latvia’s flag carrier, airBaltic officially announced its intention to operate flights to Brandenburg Airport from the Baltic region. As a result, the last flight from Riga, Latvia to Berlin’s Tegel Airport will take place on 6 November 2020.
AirBaltic’s Winter Schedule
For the upcoming winter season, airBaltic plans to fly from Riga – the Latvian capital and the airline’s main hub – to 40 destinations across its network. As a result, its commitment to Berlin plays a crucial role in attracting passengers for flights to both business and leisure destinations.
Additionally, airBaltic will be able to effectively use its fleet of 23 Airbus A220s on flights featured in its winter schedule, such as Munich, Vienna, Salzburg, Zurich, Geneva, Milan and Verona. Its expansive fleet of A220s replaced its aging Boeing 737-300s and 737-500s. This ultimately allowed the airline to solely rely on the A220s, as a powerhouse for its route network.
New Flights to Finland
The airline’s decision to relocate flights provides the opportunity for the carrier to develop and continue its reputation as a leading airline from the Baltic region. In fact, airBaltic officially announced new flights to Kittilä, Finland starting on 19 December 2020. Flights will operate once a week on one of the airline’s A220-300s.
While business travel may be on the decline during the COVID-19, airBaltic’s strategy to attract leisure travelers will hopefully be beneficial for the airline to be competitive during COVID-19. In addition, especially as the holiday season – when travel demand is usually at its highest peak – is approaching, the Riga-based carrier can use this opportunity to generate more travel demand, through operating flights to popular skiing destinations.
In the meantime, airBaltic is in its transitioning period to Berlin’s Brandenburg Airport. Consequently, its winter flight schedule and new flights will be key players to observe, as the airline navigates the industry during COVID-19.