Berlin Brandenburg Update: AirBerlin is working out the “logistical problems”

As I reported earlier today, Berlin Brandenburg Willie Brant Airport (the new BER Airport) will NOT open on the 3rd June as intended.

Whilst I’m waiting for the corporate response from Lufthansa, Air Berlin are out of the gate with a press release:

airberlin criticises postponement of airport opening

airberlin has expressed great disappointment at the announcement that the opening of the airport will be postponed. airberlin has planned all its infrastructural measures and flight schedules for 3rd June this year at the new airport Berlin Brandenburg. Hartmut Mehdorn, CEO airberlin, said: “We have to work around the change of plan, which presents us with a huge challenge. It presents immense logistical problems for all involved and will also cause additional costs which have yet to be calculated.”

The new airberlin hub is conceived in such a way that airberlin aircraft fly to Berlin from different locations in a system of six traffic waves each day. airberlin passengers are thus able to change planes and continue their flights in a very short time. This system is exactly tailored to the conditions at BER and cannot simply be put into operation at Tegel Airport. Just last Friday, airberlin‘s Board of Management visited the new airport and all parties concerned were confident that BER would go into operation on the 3rd June as planned. It is also clear to airberlin that the safety of passengers must take utmost priority.

Mehdorn: “We will now discuss the new situation with the BER management and bring our customers up to date as quickly as possible.”

The fallout of this looks likely to be wide and far reaching in terms of timetables, scheduling, and I strongly suspect Berlin-Tegel will not be able to cope with such an influx to form the new Berlin schedules.

Keep an eye on your bookings until then – everything is up in the air.