Showing posts with label Vilnius Airport. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vilnius Airport. Show all posts

27 September, 2023

Vilnius - London City Flights to Continue

Lithuania Launches New Route Development Model

Following the successful negotiations between the Ministry of Transport and Communications, Lithuanian Airports and the airlines, Lithuanian Airports have signed an investment agreement with LOT Polish Airlines, which will operate direct regular flights between Vilnius (VNO) and London City (LCY) airports. The Contract will be implemented under a new route development model that will ensure the continuity of flights to the strategically important financial hub of London, which has been served for the last few years. 

"London is a pilot destination for the new flight development model and we wanted to test how the model works. This convenient and familiar destination to the centre of London is essential to meet the needs of Lithuanians living in London, businesses and visitors to Lithuania. It is a bridge between Vilnius and London, and we see that users on both sides are satisfied. I am delighted that we have been able to secure this route both in 2019 and now. It is a good example of cooperation between project management and national institutions. We hope that Lithuanian Airports will be able to use this model to secure other important destinations for the country," said the Minister of Transport and Communications Marius Skuodis. 

Aušrinė Armonaitė, the Minister of Economy and Innovation, said that direct connections to priority countries are of vital importance both for our business and for foreign investors working in Lithuania. 

"Flight to London is also good news for our community. Using the new flight development model, Lithuania will become even more attractive for job creation and inbound tourism," says A. Armonaitė.

Vilnius Mayor Valdas Benkunskas says that it is important for Vilnius to have good connections to London. 

"London is home to financial centres of global importance. We want to see more international companies setting up in Vilnius and more good jobs, so we will look for ways to help increase demand for flights that are important for the capital," says the Mayor of Vilnius. 

A convenient schedule

The Contract with LOT Polish Airlines was signed after an international selection process for a scheduled flight operator. The selection criteria included the requirement that the route be operated at time and frequencies convenient for business travellers. All the necessary qualification checks and coordination of the joint business plan were carried out prior to the signature of the Contract. The new model will commence on October 1st this year and will ensure uninterrupted services on this important route. 

"This route is a prestigious project and a very strategic one in the context of the existing regular flights. From October onwards, the flight will continue to operate from Vilnius at a very convenient time, which we believe will also contribute to its growing popularity.  It is very important to understand that the country's investment in the development of priority flights is necessary, therefore, together with our partners, we will make every effort to ensure that the state budget will provide the necessary amount for the effective continuation of the development of the flights in the coming years as well," says Simonas Bartkus, CEO of Lithuanian Airports. 

S. Bartkus stresses that the new flight development model is not a subsidy or grant to airlines. Under this model, both in this case and in the future, contracts will only be concluded with those airlines with which a financially viable business plan for a particular route has been agreed, both for Lithuanian Airports and airlines. The new model is based on a long-term partnership between Lithuanian Airports and the airlines operating the flights. Both parties to the Contract will bear the financial risks associated with the operation of the flight and will share the financial benefits generated by the flight. All the terms and conditions for sharing the financial risks and benefits are set out in the business plan between Lithuanian Airports and LOT Polish Airlines. 

This new practice, he said, could provide a solid basis for future planning of the development of priority routes on a similar model. 

It should also be noted that the capital of the United Kingdom is also among the priority destinations for inbound tourism, so a direct flight to the centre of London is an advantage in attracting more tourists to Lithuania. The possibility of a direct flight to London could serve as a catalyst for inbound tourism, with the right focus by Lithuania’s tourism representatives placed on-demand stimulation.

Connecting to London is a priority 

Until now, LOT Polish Airlines had been contracted under a different model (Public Service Obligation - PSO), but with the UK's exit from the European Union (EU), it was no longer possible to contract under such EU regulation. 

Flights between Vilnius and the City of London were also operated by LOT Polish Airlines from May 1st 2019 until September 30th this year. This project was one of the few regulatory exemptions granted by the European Commission allowing an airline to grant State aid for the operation of a flight when the flight is recognized as a flight of special interest within the EU.

16 September, 2023

First aircraft de-icing wastewater treatment plant in the Baltic States has been opened at Vilnius Airport

This autumn/winter season Vilnius Airport is taking another step towards sustainability. A modern aircraft de-icing wastewater treatment plant will start operating at the airport – the only one of the kind in the Baltic States. It will collect and treat all the wastewater generated during the aircraft de-icing process, which can later be used as a raw material in aviation and other industries. The investment in the de-icing wastewater treatment plant amounted to EUR 2.9 million (excluding VAT). The project was partially financed by the European Union (EU).

Julius Skačkauskas, Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Lithuania, who participated in the opening ceremony, said that this investment marks a new level of aircraft service quality, aviation safety and sustainable activity in the Lithuanian aviation market.

“Our goal is the development of climate-neutral and sustainable aviation, and one of the tasks set for the airports is the development of safe and sustainable infrastructure. The implementation of such top-level solutions proves that the Lithuanian aviation sector is purposefully moving along the path of both improving the quality of service and increasing security, as well as sustainability and the green course”, said Deputy Minister at the opening ceremony.

The automated aircraft de-icing wastewater treatment plant will make an important part of the reconstruction and strategic development of Vilnius Airport. In addition, according to Arnas Dūmanas, Director of the Development Department of Lithuanian Airports, this is a significant step in the development of the harmonious operation of airports.

31 May, 2023

Lego Brings the Future to Life:

Explore the Miniature Departures Terminal at Vilnius Airport


While the ongoing construction of the new Departures terminal at Vilnius International Airport (VNO) is set to be finished by 2025, renowned Lithuanian Lego model creator, Rokas Mikšiūnas, has unveiled his own version of the building. Using 13,700 Lego blocks, Mikšiūnas meticulously constructed a model of the future terminal, which is now on display for passengers and their companions to see at the current Departures terminal of Vilnius Airport.

“It is estimated that passenger traffic at Vilnius Airport will double over the next 10 years. Therefore, it is necessary to have a new Departures terminal. Once it is built and connected to the infrastructure of the existing terminals, the passenger capacity at the airport will double to 2,400 passengers per hour. We will also apply innovations to enhance the travel experience and the efficiency of Lithuanian air gateways. We invited Rokas Mikšiūnas to build a Lego model of the future Departures terminal to visually demonstrate the future image of Vilnius Airport to the public and to remind them that significant changes have begun,” said Arnas Dūmanas, Director of the Development Department of Lithuanian Airports.

Completed in just 7 days

Rokas Mikšiūnas, the architectural and cultural heritage promoter, began planning the Lego version of the Departures terminal in April. He spent most of that time creating the design and layout of the model. It was necessary to examine an existing 3D model of the building, calculate exactly how many and which Lego bricks would be needed for the model, and then place a precise order with the Lego manufacturer.

Once the 15 kg (33 lbs) parcel reached the hands of Rokas Mikšiūnas on May 22, he began assembling the model. This meticulous work took 7 days, as he worked from 8 a.m. until 12 a.m. A good crew was required to finish the job on time, just like in traditional construction work, thus 8 of Rokas' pals helped create the Lego airport model.

“It’s my first Lego model of an airport terminal, and it’s one of the greatest works that I’ve ever made. Perhaps the most challenging task was replicating the architecture of the Departures terminal facade. Even though it was difficult to implement, this project was very interesting and important to me personally. I would say that I am the informal ambassador of Vilnius. I want as many people as possible to learn about the capital, as well as to be able to visit as conveniently as possible, and the new terminal will help us achieve this," said Rokas Mikšiūnas.

You can see his creation and take a photo with it in the current Departures terminal of Vilnius Airport. Later, it is expected to be displayed at various events, conferences and exhibitions.

The actual terminal will be ready in less than two years

The Lego terminal, according to Arnas Dūmanas, is a symbolic reminder of significant changes, because Vilnius Airport is scheduled to change beyond recognition in 2025.

The new two-storey, 14,400 sq. m passenger Departures terminal is already sprouting up between the current terminal and the VIP terminal with a conference centre. The new terminal will be connected to the current passenger terminal by a spacious gallery, allowing for smooth communication between the terminals.

It is planned that the ground floor of the new building will house a check-in area with a self-service area, featuring a time-saving self-service baggage system. Public spaces, cafeterias and other commercial zones, as well as airline offices, will be built. On the second floor, there will be a security checkpoint as well as departure and arrival gates for passengers from the Schengen area. In addition, the current terminal will be transformed into a space where passengers can wait for their flights in comfort, by shopping, eating and relaxing before their journey.

“We are focusing not only on convenience and fast services for passengers, but also on sustainability. The new building meets A++ energy class requirements and produces very low CO2 emissions, and we are aiming for BREEAM Good certification. Sustainable construction also leads to a better performance, higher long-term returns, and a responsible approach to the environment and human health,” said Arnas Dūmanas.

05 May, 2023

A rapidly growing Vilnius Airport offers new opportunities for international business......

Lithuania's Vilnius Airport is doing well and catching up with pre-pandemic traffic levels and is planning for steady growth in the forthcoming months. 

A new departure terminal is already under construction at Lithuania's largest civilian airport and is scheduled to open in 2025. This addition will not only increase the airport's capacity by more than 14,000 square metres, but will also significantly expand commercial space for retailers, caterers, and other service providers. 

Vilnius Airport handled a record 5 million passengers in 2019, and in 2022, after the pandemic, passengers are travelling once again — 3.9 million people flew to and from Vilnius last year. According to the forecasts of Lithuanian Airports, the number of passengers is expected to double over the next decade to around 7.5 million passengers per year. 

“According to our estimates, the number of passengers at Vilnius Airport is expected to grow at an average rate of around 8% per year. We are preparing for this and we are expanding to ensure that we are able to meet the needs of our passengers and to offer them more high-quality places to shop, eat delicious and quick meals, and to receive other services that are relevant to travellers,” says Gintarė Norvilaitė-Tautevičė, the Chief Commercial Officer of Lithuanian Airports. 

Commercial space will grow one and a half times 

Currently, the commercial space of Vilnius Airport is about 3,300 square metres (excluding warehouses, technical facilities, and offices). There are 6 Duty-Free shops, 9 cafés and restaurants, and 11 other retail and service outlets. 

07 October, 2022

Lithuanian Airports witness double-digit growth in September....

September aviation traffic continued to grow, with double-digit growth in charter passenger numbers

Photo Lithuanian Airports
Aviation growth has continued unabated at the start of autumn, with traffic and passenger numbers close to pre-pandemic rates. In September, Lithuanian airports handled just over 531,000 passengers and 4.7 thousand flights. In the same period in 2019, 603,000 passengers and 5.7 thousand flights were handled.

In total, during the first nine months of 2022 (January-September) Lithuanian airports have already handled over 4 million passengers. In 2021, 1.5 million passengers were handled in the same period, and in 2019, 4.9 million passengers were recorded in the first nine months.

According to Tomas Zitikis, Route Development Manager at Lithuanian Airports, the recovery of aviation did not stop in autumn, and in some cases the indicators grew.

“This September, we managed to restore 88% of the total passenger traffic level as of the same month in 2019. Perhaps one category of passenger traffic worth highlighting is that charter alone is already outperforming 2019, with a 17% increase in charter passengers over the past month when comparing August and September.” - said T. Zitikis.

According to him, this rapid growth is due to the increased interest in travel to Turkey. Temperatures are milder in autumn and there are better offers from tour companies.

Looking at the number of existing destinations, T. Zitikis said that in September this year passengers at Lithuanian airports could choose from 89 direct routes. In comparison, in the same period in 2019, 92 destinations were available to passengers.

Growth across all airports

05 October, 2022

Vilnius Airport achieves Level 3 of Airport Carbon Accreditation programme

Photo Vilnius Airport 

Vilnius Airport has achieved significant recognition from the international environmental programme Airports Carbon Accreditation (ACA). Lithuania's largest airport has managed to reduce its average carbon dioxide emissions per passenger by more than a third in just a few years. This and the results of various other environmental projects have enabled the airport to reach the third stage of the international programme (“optimisation”), the best rating among Baltic States' airports.

All three airports are moving to the new level of the programme at the same time - Vilnius Airport, which has been participating in the ACA programme since 2016, is moving from the second to the third level of the programme, while Kaunas and Palanga airports, which have joined the ACA programme in 2019, are moving to the second level (“reduction”).

“We are pleased with the progress Lithuanian Airports are demonstrating in this environmental programme. Vilnius Airport is now entering the third level of the programme, which means that not only the airport, but also its partners will be directly involved in the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. Kaunas and Palanga airports have also shown real progress in actively reducing emissions from direct airport operations. I am pleased that Lithuanian airports are showing leadership in the Baltic region,” said Olivier Jankovec, CEO of ACI Europe, an organisation linking European airports.

13 September, 2022

Lithuanian Airports announces new contractor for the construction of new Vilnius airport departure terminal

Image  Lithuanian Airports

Lithuanian Airports has finalised the public procurement procedure for the selection of the contractor to build the new passenger departure terminal at Vilnius Airport. Eikos Statyba was selected as the contractor. The new terminal will be built between the VIP terminal with conference centre and the old passenger terminal. The total value of the contract is EUR 41.5 million (excluding VAT).

The company had won an earlier tender, but the contract was not signed then due to the geopolitical situation, with a sharp increase in construction and material prices, and the mandatory legal regulation of public procurement, which restricts the signing of a contract by modifying the pre-publicised terms of the contract on price indexation.

“Faced with legal challenges, we kept up our preparations for the new procurement: we held a public consultation and presented major changes to the procurement documents. As a result, we were able to quickly respond and successfully implement the new procurement,” said Arnas Dūmanas, Head of the Operations and Infrastructure Department of Lithuanian Airports.

Image  Lithuanian Airports

“Lithuania's main airport must be convenient for passengers, meet international standards and perform its functions properly. The new terminal at Vilnius Airport will make a significant contribution to the development of the aviation sector, opening up new capacity opportunities. As passenger traffic at the airport grows, it is important to ensure comfortable service conditions that meet modern standards,” said Minister of Transport and Communications Marius Skuodis.