European aviation problems are having an impact in Budapest

European aviation problems are having an impact in Budapest

The onset of the summer season, the dynamic growth of post-Covid air traffic and the unprecedented staff shortage across Europe is creating huge challenges for airports across the continent.

In terms of passenger traffic, it is important to stress that the challenge at the airport is never the total number of passengers, but rather the handling of peak traffic, when many aircraft depart or arrive in a short time – wrote the statement of Budapest Airport.

In Budapest, this typically means early morning, midday and evening/night periods. The biggest airport in Hungary has prepared for the summer season in all aspects – technological innovations, infrastructure and human resources – to ensure smooth passenger handling and quality service. However, it is very important to underline that besides Budapest Airport several other partner companies are involved in passenger services at the airport. In order for airport processes to run seamlessly, all the companies involved must provide the same quality of service, as the processes are interdependent and interrelated. If there is a stoppage or slowdown in any process it can affect the entire passenger service process.

The severe staff shortages at other European airports, which mainly affect ground handling companies – which also carry out check-in, baggage handling and boarding – are causing serious disruptions to flight handling and thus traffic management. This is compounded by additional staff shortages at airlines and also strike action throughout the aviation value chain.   Given that the international situation is already having an impact on traffic and passenger flows at Budapest Airport, the company would like to provide the following information to help its passengers.

Cancellations and delays

Currently flight cancellations have only a minor impact on the operation of Budapest airport. Generally speaking, there are 10-15 per week at Ferenc Liszt International Airport due to operational reasons, regardless of the airline – overall this is a very small number versus the total number of flights. Cancellations are affected by two factors: in case of aircraft operating multiple routes in a given day, delays accumulated by the end of the day result in the last flight of the aircraft not departing because the host airport is already closed. The other reason is that other airports are unable to serve the flight due to staff shortage, so the flight does not arrive in Budapest.

Passengers should keep an eye on the information provided by the airline, so that if a flight is cancelled, they can rebook to another flight in time. In addition, the flight information available on the Budapest Airport website provides accurate information about the expected arrival and departure times, possible delays or cancellations.

As passengers have a contract with the airlines, they should contact the airlines in case of cancellations and delays.

Suitcases arriving late

Unfortunately, in recent days it has become a common experience at many airports that, due to the service disruptions in Europe, arriving flights do not or only partially carry hold luggage of the passengers on board. This phenomenon occurs irrespective of the airline, as it is also due to staff shortages at the ground handling companies of some airports. Optimally, baggage left at the departure airport will arrive on another flight the same day, but it may also arrive in Budapest with a delay of 1-2 days. This only happens in case of arriving flights; at Budapest airport, all baggage of all flights has and will be put on the aircraft. 

The airline’s liability for delayed baggage is laid down in regulation (EC) no. 2027/97. In this case, the passenger must register the baggage with the lost baggage service of the related ground handler that is servicing that airlines flights, and upon arrival of the baggage the ground handling company will identify the owner and the location of the baggage, and the airline’s contracted courier service will then deliver the baggage to the address provided by the passenger. If the passenger wishes to, they can also come to the airport to collect their baggage themselves, once they have been informed that it has arrived.

The Runway Run, Budapest Airport’s charity running race, started off for the tenth time on Saturday. The airport operator will again donate proceeds from the invitation-only race, which will amount to several million forints, to charity this year.