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T2 at El Prat airport is closed again due to lack of flights

The passenger operation of the airport of Barcelona concentrates again from this week on the terminal T1, just as it happened during the alarm state. The reason is the same: the lack of air traffic in facilities that, far from managing between 700 and 800 daily flights as they were used to at this time of year, now process between 150 and 200 landings and takeoffs a day.

At a time when El Prat is still in its lowest hours, the managers of the facilities have decided to ration economic expenses and embrace the banner of austerity. Death wound the airline Norwegian, the low-cost Irish Ryanair -the one that transports the most travelers from T2- will be the most affected by the move followed by EasyJet Y Wizzair, two other companies low cost with a good number of users in El Prat.

The decision of the management company of the Spanish airports, Aena, implies that all airlines operate from T1 of the Barcelona aerodrome so that the operation is optimized and adapted to the new air traffic figures determined by the economic crisis derived from the coronavirus pandemic. The second Spanish airport has just run out of flights to the United States at a time when loses 84.7% of passengers in the last month for which there are records. The fall of last October is unprecedented in facilities that are used to exceeding their number of travelers for a year. Compared to October 2019, El Prat lost 712,283 travelers, according to Aena. In the most uncertain winter season at Barcelona airport, the accumulated annual decline plummets to 74%.

For the airlines that operate in T2, the transfer to the main terminal in El Prat began on November 19. From now on, all the companies’ operations will be concentrated in the five modules of terminal T1. While the módulos A, B y C will be used by the routes of the Schengen area, the D y E will go to the rest of the destinations. The managers of the facilities will take advantage of the lessons learned from previous experience, between March 27 and July 24, 2020, also motivated by the mobility restrictions caused by Covid.

With hardly any visitor presence in an eminently tourist city like Barcelona, ​​the main Catalan airport once again concentrates its reduced activity in one of its two terminals. Thus, El Prat responds to the brutal drop in the number of travelers passing through the facilities. The closure of T2 will also affect transport services such as the shuttle bus that takes users of Nearby Renfe from the old to the new terminal. The alternative for affected passengers or workers is the metro or bus line 46 from T2.

The end of the first lock on T2, at the end of last July, coincided with the operation that came out of the summer holidays, but even that circumstance did not make the Barcelona airport take off the flight. Its air traffic figures are today far from those of the main European airports. The current supply of the airlines is very low compared to the time before the pandemic. Ryanair, for example, today offers only 40% of the flights it had a year ago.

Vueling, a leading airline in facilities, has reduced its offer by 41%, a drop very similar to that of Iberia. Although the current reality is complex for companies, most say that they hope to take flight during a summer season that will begin at the end of March 2021.

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