The new airport of the German capital will open its doors on October 31. The two most important customers in Berlin will perform a parallel inaugural landing.
Only 65 remaining days: The new airport of the German capital is finally set to open. Airport operator Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg (FBB), announced on Friday (August 28), that the inauguration of the airport using the new designator BER will take place in spectacular fashion. Aircraft from Easyjet and Lufthansa will land simultaneously on October 31. The two airline groups are the largest customers.
Back in 2011 when the famously delayed airport was originally due to open, Berlin still had its own airline: Air Berlin. BER would have become the home base and a major hub of the carrier. However, Air Berlin shut down in late-October 2017.
Getting ready for the opening
Right now, Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg is carrying out a series of pre-opening tests at the new Berlin Airport. Several thousand volunteers are involved in a number of different test to make sure everything is working as it should. Initially, the airport was planning with around 20,000 volunteers, but the number had to be lowered due to Covid-19 related health measures. On August 26, there was an evacuation exercise, involving 800 people.
There will be some visible changes even before the opening. On October 25, Schoenefeld Airport (currently coded as SXF) will be renamed into BER Terminal 5 and receive the BER IATA code. Tegel Airport, located northwest of Berlin, will later be closed on November 8. It will receive a «worthy farewell», Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg says.
Additional financial requirements of 250 million
Unfortunately, the forecasts for the new airport are not all good. The Coronavirus crisis and expected slow recovery led to additional financing requirements. This is predicted to amount to around 250 million euros (US $300 million). Previously, additional costs of 300 million euros had been expected, as Berlin Brandenburg Airport now states.