12 March 2020

CPH: The airport is still open – with significantly fewer passengers and improved measures to combat COVID-19

The current situation involving the COVID-19 virus outbreak has led to significant changes to the travel guidelines issued by the authorities and the travel habits of airline passengers. This also affects activities at Copenhagen Airport (CPH). As more flight departures and arrivals are being cancelled, and in the wake of a significant reduction in the number of travellers at the airport, CPH is making plans. 

Since Copenhagen Airport is part of Denmark’s critical infrastructure, the airport will continue to be open to traffic and passengers. In collaboration with relevant authorities, the airport will also ensure improved measures for limiting the spread of the virus to the greatest extent possible.

During the coming days and weeks, we will be implementing changes to the way the airport’s operations are organised.

We do not yet know how much traffic will be affected, but it is not unlikely that on selected days in the coming period there may be a reduction of normal traffic of up to 70%. We will have to adjust our organisation accordingly. Therefore, in accordance with the recommendations issued by the government, we will introduce initiatives to address the expected reduction in activity. These include modified rota systems for the airport’s own employees, an increase in the number of employees working from home, taking holidays, taking accrued time off and leave of absence,” says Kristine Bergenholtz, HR Manager at Københavns Lufthavne.

She emphasises that the airport is working in cooperation with the employees to find solutions that can reduce costs, with the definitive goal of avoiding rounds of layoffs due to reduced activity.

New initiatives to limit the spread of the virus

Apart from the determination to steer the airport through the economic aspects of the Corona crisis, the management team - much like the rest of society - is increasing its focus on limiting the risk of further spreading the COVID-19 virus.

Copenhagen Airport is in close discussion with the authorities and is following the guidelines for limiting the spread of the virus to the greatest extent possible. This involves the implementation of a number of new initiatives at the airport, supplementing recent measures such as improved passenger information, access to hand sanitizer and better training and information for CPH employees.

The new initiatives include:

  • Greater distance between passengers: To avoid travellers standing too close to one another, the airport is working on establishing better distribution of travellers in the airport area. Generally, this will mean that only every second check-in counter will be open for checking in. Similarly, only every second security line will be open at the security checkpoint.
  • More information for avoiding large groups: Announcements over the speakers will request travellers to keep their distance and to avoid standing in large groups while at the airport.
  • Continued service guaranteed for travellers: In order to maintain a minimum level of service and to enable travellers to buy food and drink at the airport’s facilities, we have entered into agreements with certain concessionaires of restaurants and shops to ensure that they remain open over the next 14 days. Other shops and restaurants will have the option of choosing whether, in light of the significantly-reduced passenger activity, they wish to remain open. Restaurants remaining open will take measures to ensure that guests sit at a suitable distance from one another.

In addition,CPH has implemented extraordinarily-high standards of cleaning, prioritising compliance with the most recent Statens Serum Institut guidelines regarding cleaning performed in public transport contexts. CPH’s cleaning staff wipe down surfaces frequently, while paying extra attention to cleaning surfaces and contact points, which both passengers and employees come into contact with. This includes all the airport’s doorhandles, railings and vending machines, buttons and mirrors in the elevators, and counters, keyboards etc. at gates.

This is an extraordinary situation for our society, and it requires extraordinary solutions – also here at Copenhagen Airport. I am very pleased to have encountered such a positive response and understanding from all employees, partners, airlines and passengers. We all share the task of ensuring that the spread of the virus is limited to the greatest extent possible, while keeping Denmark’s vital infrastructure going. So, at the airport, we will also comply with the recommendations issued by the authorities and the government,” says Thomas Woldbye, CEO of CPH.


For further comments: Head of Press Relations, Kenni Leth, Københavns Lufthavne, tel. 32312800