01 Jul Southend Airport opens its doors to passengers after 3 months COVID closure
London Southend Airport today opens its terminal doors to passengers for its first flight after three months of being closed due to COVID-19. Airport CEO Glyn Jones cuts the rainbow ribbon in honour of NHS workers at a re-opening ceremony for the Malaga flight with Ryanair. The terminal is packed with new measures to protect passengers and employees using the airport.
Glyn Jones, CEO Stobart Aviation “We have worked extremely hard to ensure measures are in place to create a biosphere within the terminal, delivering confidence to our customers. As London’s most modern airport, the terminal design and space supports social distancing and allows approximately 17 square metres per passenger during busy times. “
Whilst the pandemic stopped passenger flights the airport has continued with cargo operations and repatriation flights without issue. Services are expected to resume throughout July from airline partners including Ryanair, Wizz Air and Flyone plus a new route to Norway which will start in August with Wideroe. Whilst a reduced schedule is operated initially latest flight information is available via airlines directly and the airport will provide updates as they become available.
A range of safety measures have been introduced to create a biosphere within the terminal, from mandatory face coverings and only allowing those travelling inside, to enhanced cleaning and bio-screens at all face to face locations.
Significant investments have been made to provide hand sanitisation stations every 20 paces of the terminal journey, installation of temperature cameras as passengers approach security e-gates and a new next generation security scanner which will enable liquids and laptops to remain within bags.
Glyn continues, “We are reducing touch points throughout the journey to limit potential spread of the virus, deep cleaning will take place nightly whilst the cleaning team will be sanitising handrails and surfaces throughout the day. We are committed to safety and continue discussions for further investments into innovations for the airport.”
As the only London airport identified as low risk by EASA (European Union Aviation Safety Agency) it is an appealing option for those travelling. Already Greece has determined that quarantine upon arrival is not required for London Southend Airport passengers and further air bridges are expected for more destinations in the coming days.
Consistently voted as London’s best airport by Which? And last year recognised for joint fastest security queues, the airport naturally lends itself to a safer experience and a smarter choice.