Berlin’s Airport is Finally, Fully, Completely, Closing

The saga of the Berlin Tegel airport has been one that has lasted years. Originally scheduled to close back in 2012, the closing has been delayed and pushed back and moved for almost a full decade. Now a combination of factors, including the coronavirus, has finally brought the international Berlin Tegel airport to an end.

Modern History of Berlin Tegel Airport

The airport got a new runway back in 1948 during the Berlin Airlift, at the time, the longest in all of Europe. It could accommodate all of the aircraft needed for the operation and was later used as a base of operations for French and American military endeavors.

Back in the days of East and West Berlin, the Berlin Airport hosted all of the international airlines including Air France, British Airways, and even Pan Am. Air Berlin had a hub there until their collapse in 2017, and still to this day, most airlines that are not low-cost carriers operate out of the close by Schönefeld Airport.

Sporting a mostly 1960’s decor, once shut down, the airport is going to be converted and turned into an Urban Tech Republic, allowing new business to come in and take over, hopefully maintaining some of the surrounding area.

Image courtesy of the Financial Times

Berlin’s Four Major Airports

Coming June 15th, only one of the airports will be open full time.

  • Tempelhof Airport closed back in 2008, now a city part and part of the “Berlin Creative District”
  • Tegel Airport is closing on June 15th
  • Schönefeld Airport, the low cost airport, will remain open and become the new “Terminal 5 of…”
  • BER Airport. The new Berlin Airport, officially opening on October 31st, 2020

According to the Berlin Spectator, on May 20th when their reporter went to the airport to find out more information, there were a grand total of nine, not ninety, nine flights scheduled. Operations at that level are just simply not sustainable.

Still Selling Flights

Apparently, no one has got the word out to some airlines, as they’re still selling tickets. Currently, for a flight ten days after the projected closure, British Airways is selling a one-way ticket for $92.

The official press release from FBB, the company who manages the airport, can be found here. While they claim that it is only a temporary closure, the closure itself doesn’t seem too temporary, as they’re urging airlines to move flights to the SXF airport until the new BER airport opens in a few short months.

Have you flown to Tegel? What have your experiences been?

Author: Jon Nickel-D'Andrea

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6 Comments

  1. “Back in the days of East and West Berlin, the Berlin Airport hosted all of the international airlines including Air France, British Airways, and even Pan Am. Air Berlin had a hub there until their collapse in 2017, and still to this day, most airlines that are not low-cost carriers operate out of the close by Schönefeld Airport.” Confusing and the last part is wrong. Tegel was West Berlin’s main airport, Schönefeld was in East Berlin. It’s the low-cost carriers that currently dominate Schönefeld, which is definitely not “close by” – Tegel is NW of the city and Schönefeld is way out in the SE.

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  2. Also, Lufthansa seems to have flights into/out of TXL through Nov 7, switching to BER Nov 8. Take that for what it’s worth.

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  3. My flight left 45 minutes late do to security screening. The security line had people for the next 2 flights after my flight. No carrier actually employees anyone there, it all contracted employees – that will nice about it – can’t even do a simple ticketing transaction.

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  4. I flew through TXL a couple of years before the Berlin Wall came down. It sounds so weird now to say that I was flying Pan Am from the US to CPH for a family wedding, but I remember the airport fondly. I still love the scene in Atomic Blonde in TXL.

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  5. Bye, for now, Berlin Tegel Airport. You have been witnessed by a lot of the world’s events. You have done your purpose. You will always be a part of Germany’s rich history.

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