With the introduction of a comprehensive epidemiological safety programme Riga Airport has resumed international passenger flights to Vilnius, Tallinn, Oslo and Frankfurt. Four flights daily will be operated by the national carrier airBaltic.
The programme #ForbidTheVirusFromTravelling provides a set of measures to ensure the protection of the airport, its employees and its passengers. It has been designed in consultation with Latvian health authorities and taken into account the recommendations of international aviation organisations.
“In order to contribute to the control of the disease and to take care of the safety of employees and passengers, together with airlines, cooperation partners and specialists, we have done extensive and thorough work to prepare Riga Airport for work in the conditions of the pandemic,” said Laila Odina, Chairperson of the airport board. She went on to say that the effectiveness of additional measures introduced at the airport “also depends on each of us – how responsibly and carefully we will meet the requirements. That is why I encourage us to travel ourselves, but we should not let the virus travel.”
Given that social distancing will be difficult to ensure throughout the airport journey due to infrastructure and security procedures the Minister of Transport has stipulated that all travellers, except children under the age of 7, must wear a medical mask when at the airport.
Commenting on how Riga Airport’s programme is a good example for other European airports to follow, Raimonds Gruntiņš, Director Regional Affairs, Europe, International Air Transport Association (IATA), said, “The programme is based on close cooperation between the airport, airlines and public authorities, following the recommendations of international experts and good practices. It covers important aspects that should be taken into account in order to make passenger services and other airport processes as epidemiologically safe as possible, while taking care of both passenger and aircraft service quality and aviation security.”