Around 175,000 passengers passed through the airport in January – which is only 8.9% of traffic from the same time last year
Passenger traffic at Copenhagen Airport hit an all-time low at the beginning of this year after a brief recovery period in the summer.
There were only 132 departures from the facility in January of this year compared with 617 in the same period in 2020. The airport hopes the development of a universal coronavirus passport and the distribution of vaccines will lead the path to recovery.
“This January was in every way a sad start to the year at Copenhagen Airport, and the outlook for February is even bleaker bearing in mind the new travel restrictions with requirements of mandatory quarantine and a negative COVID-19 test result for all travellers on international arrivals,” said Peter Krogsgaard, chief commercial officer at CPH.
Those who wish to travel from the airport must use the free COVID-19 test facilities in Piers E and C. Once a negative result is obtained, travellers are allowed to proceed through to passport control.
Relief schemes have not been made available to the public this year compared with those set up in 2020. Therefore, over 10,000 jobs in the Danish aviation industry have been lost, with many of them being at CPH.
Initially, the Danish government planned on releasing a print-version passport that would be ready for business travellers within a month. They also stated that work would begin on a digital passport to allow the Danish general public to travel and should be ready by summer.
European and overseas routes have been most effected by the restricted travel bans. Around 94.5% of traffic at the airport is for international routes. In January, 79% of the few remaining flights were to international destinations. London is usually the top destination for travel, as well as other Danish destinations like Aalborg and Ronne. These two places account for around 14% of all passengers that travel to and from Copenhagen.
Domestic travel has been impacted but at significantly lower levels.
“Obviously, it's difficult to run a commercial airport when there are virtually no passengers, but right now, Danes have not only very few travel options, they are also afraid to travel. However, we're sure that the new coronavirus passport will create confidence and reawaken people's appetite for travel. Hopefully, it'll be the glimpse of light for aviation that we need to leave the darkness behind created by the coronavirus, even though we're well aware that the recovery may take a long time," Krogsgaard concludes.