Decisions needed to resolve airport problems

Travel Agencies call for urgent decisions to resolve airport inoperability

Madeira airport signageThe Diario reports on concern being voiced by Portuguese Association of Travel and Tourism Agencies (APAVT) over the situation at Madeira airport.
The bankruptcy of the Germania airline, in the wake of what happened in the recent past with carriers Monarch, Air Berlin and Lauda Air, is yet another blow to Madeira’s tourism, already over-exposed by the growing inoperability of Madeira airport, for the rapid replacement of traffic affected by these situations.
“It is ironic that when the International Air Transport Association continues to demand from our sector more and more guarantees and to impose increasing restrictions on activity, it is its own associates to announce, one after the other, bankruptcies that leave consumers with no solution, and the destinations and all their stakeholders affected, “says the president of APAVT, Pedro Costa Ferreira.
He urges the Government and all competent authorities to take urgent decisions to adopt policies and investments to resolve the recent inoperability of Madeira airport.
“In a destination whose economy depends on tourism, it is incomprehensible and unacceptable that nothing is done to solve this problem. The replacement of the traffic carried by these failed carriers, as well as the development of new connections, is absolutely dependent on the airport’s operation. And the same is true of the transport of residents themselves, “says Costa Ferreira.

8 thoughts on “Decisions needed to resolve airport problems”

  1. I would suggest who is going to pay for it is the question clouding any decision. Still no results from the promised review of wind limits and even if passenger safety will not be compromised by adjusting those limits , there will still be occasions when the airport will not be able to operate.

    The Porto Santo Plan B would appear to be the only alternative solution, but after spending a night ‘dossed down’ with another 150 passengers in that airport terminal last August courtesy of Easy Jet, I came to the conclusion that, whilst it’s a fine terminal for what it does, it would require massive expenditure in infrastructure and manpower for it to handle more than a handful of diverted FNC flights.

    The second expense problem is the ferry to shuttle passengers to Madeira, the Lobo Marinho can carry 1,150 passengers so roughly 6 or 7 plane loads, her present time table would appear to allow an additional trip to say Caniçal and back during the afternoon before making her evening run to Funchal but fuel and additional relief crewing costs would have to be met and still you probably haven’t shifted all diverted passengers – don’t even think of the cost of an additional ferry !!

    All that combined with a massive logistical nightmare which would be expected to swing into place at the drop of a hat, as operators wouldn’t want to abandon FNC until absolutely necessary, makes you realise the size of the problem faced for what is an occasional yet nevertheless vexing situation.

  2. Thank you all – no pressure then for any further comments I make lol !!

    After 30 plus years of making often unpopular command decisionsI I’ve developed broad shoulders and rhinoceros skin so I could sort out Brexit at the stroke of a pen Jayne but that thorny subject is best left to the Brexit blogs as I have recently been informed that ,apparently unbeknown to myself, I entered some sort of game/competition in June 2016 and I lost, which seemingly precludes me from expressing my views on UK economics and politics !!!

    I do think more could be done with existing resources or with minimal, justifiable expenditure ( extend the apron area so more aircraft can “park” at PXO) but it needs the Regional Government to organise a command and control centre to take over the operation and liaise with all operators involved, not leave it to individual airlines to make their own arrangements.
    Porto Santo Line could cancel their time table and start a shuttle service to/from Madeira not only to get visitors to their hotels but more importantly (imo) get people onto their flights home as many have work to return to next day.
    After 22 years of ‘making it on the day’ we got caught out twice last year – hopefully it was “just one of those years”

  3. Jaime M Thank you for putting in the blog new approach of words and thoughts. You comments are welcome. Its food for the thought keep it up. Which other blog writers are also interesting Makes the blog better read

  4. Well done Jaime M. your remarks are very welcome.

    With regard to the airport at Porto Santo. I think decisions for alterations and improvement are more complicated than we know. The airport construction was origionally financed by NATO and was, I understand origionally for military use only. But now it has shared use and is declared as a civilian and military airport.

    As for Porto Santo Line. They couldn’t run a ### in a brewery. I think the managers should spend a few months at Dover to understand what a RoRo business really is.
    Your idea is excellent. Pity it will never happen.

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