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2020.04.27 13:00

Lithuania's airports plan gradual resumption of air travel

Erika Alonderytė, BNS2020.04.27 13:00

With international air travel virtually suspended, Lithuania's airports are making plans for resuming aviation. State support will be vital for the sector to survive, according to the CEO of Lithuanian Airports.

Flights from Lithuania to the key hubs of Frankfurt, Copenhagen and Warsaw will resume first, so that the country is accessible by air, said Marius Gelžinis.

Read more: Vilnius airport reaches 5m passengers on last day of 2019

“Later on, the second step would be to resume the flights for our people working abroad to be able to travel and return to their places of employment,” he told BNS on Friday.

Flights from Lithuania's three international airports may resume in the middle of May, Gelžinis believes, if the government decides to lift restrictions on passenger flights.

The airport operator is also negotiating with the Transport Ministry over financial assistance, Gelžinis said, without giving details about the exact sums of money in question.

Transport Vice Minister Vladislav Kondratovič later confirmed to BNS that an action plan was in the works, adding that the ministry was looking looking at the entire transport sector.

Lithuania's three airports – in Vilnius, Kaunas and Palanga – served 1.104 million passengers over the first three months of this year, down 16.4 percent from the same period last year.

In March alone, passenger flows slumped 56 percent to 202,000. The number of flights at all the three airports dropped 7.8 percent to 12,300 in the first quarter.