Berlin, which is used to problematic aviation news, finally has something positive to announce: American Airlines commences serving Philadelphia, while U.S. integrator UPS switches their Berlin equipment from B73F to the larger B76F. And Amazon just celebrated putting the roof on their new fulfillment center next to SXF.
American Airlines is not a new name standing on Berlin’s customer list. Shortly after the iron wall crumbled in November 1989, the carrier started serving the German capital. However, the honeymoon was soon over, and the airline bid farewell to Berlin.
4 x weekly PHL-TXL
The absence will end on 8 June, when AA starts operating four-weekly seasonal B767 passenger flights on the Philadelphia-Berlin (TXL) sector. The aircraft can accommodate 10 tons of freight per flight in their belly holds, thus offering particularly Berlin’s electronic and pharma industry additional capacity for their products marketed in the U.S.
Handling agent at Berlin Tegel Airport (TXL) is Wisag Cargo Service, while the lower deck capacity is sold by AA’s Frankfurt office.
Including American, all three big U.S. carrier are meanwhile serving Berlin. United operates daily flights between Berlin Tegel and Newark Liberty International (EWR), so does Delta serving the sector TXL - JFK. Both carriers rely on passenger B767 equipment. In addition, Air Canada’s low-cost subsidiary Rouge operates Toronto – Berlin (B767) and upped its flights just from 4 weekly to 6/7th.
Berlin experiences cargo upswing
Summarizing, it can be said that Germany’s capital city is appearing on the radar screen of international airlines again. This is emphasized by Torsten Jueling, Berlin Airport’s Senior Manager Aviation Marketing / Air Cargo Operations: “We are well on the way to gradually offsetting the loss of routes between Berlin and the USA following the bankruptcy of Air Berlin in October 2017.”
What also pleases the cargo manager and the entire local air freight industry is UPS’s decision to increase the transport capacity between the integrator’s central European hub Cologne / Bonn and Berlin by switching from B73F equipment to the larger B76F as of 3. June. “This will definitely speed up the cargo growth at SXF which grew 13 percent from January to April,” he says.
Berlin’s upswing in cargo will further be spurred by e-commerce giant Amazon that intends to operate a large fulfillment center at Schoenefeld Airport (SXF) located in the southern suburbs of the city. The new 34,000 square meter sorting and distribution center will open in autumn, creating 100 jobs.
The topping-out ceremony for Amazon’s future SXF facility took place on 14 May.