Routes to recovery reap rewards at Billund

Bernie Baldwin

The airport remained open for business during COVID- 19 and has detailed plans in place to steer the airport forward safely.

“It has been absolutely horrible to have an airport with almost no passengers going through. However the marketing team has managed to keep the eye on the ball trying to ensure the airport’s success.”

Jesper Klausholm, head of airlines relation and marketing at Billund Airport (BLL) is describing how the airport has endured lockdown and how he and his team have used their time fruitfully. “For that continued success, close contact and cooperation with the airlines throughout the entire COVID-19 situation has been prioritised,” he confirms. “Within the first two of weeks of the shutdown in Denmark and across Europe, recovery marketing plans were created for each airline, down to specific routes and segments ready to execute when the airlines resumed ticket sales. It has been important during the entire process to emphasise to our airline partners that BLL is the airline’s extended arm in the west Denmark market.

Denmark has been one of the leading countries in the way it has dealt with COVID-19 and Billund Airport has never been closed. “During the whole period, KLM has been operating to Amsterdam and Wizz Air has been flying to Iaşi, Bucharest and Cluj-Napoca. In late May and early June, we saw Lufthansa, Danish Air Transport and Atlantic Airways opening up routes as well as an extended route map from Wizz Air. Hopefully we’ll see all our carriers resume flights before the beginning of the winter schedule,” Klausholm remarks.

As for the area’s biggest attraction, Legoland, the airport executive reports that all attractions within Legoland Billund Resort are open, so he is confident that visitors will return. “All the great cities and nature sites in west Denmark are open.”

When those travellers do return, the airport will have plans ready for safe passenger processing. “Our head of passenger experience, Ditte Bank Thorsager, has gained the nick name HOPE for a reason,” Klausholm quips. “She is very eager to ensure all passengers experience BLL as a safe place to be and has been decorating the entire terminal in blue stickers indicating the new COVID-19 safety standards ‘Keep Your Distance’, ‘Disinfect your hands’ and so on, throughout the passenger flow. In addition the cleaning processes of guest’s touchpoints have been upscaled, making our cleaning colleagues hygiene heroes!”

Klausholm emphasises that BLL has worked closely with the Danish Government to make sure compliance with the rules and guidelines is straightforward for airports and passengers alike. Doing so will help keep away that “horrible” feeling of a scarcely populated airport.

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