Lufthansa Cargo has decided to relocate some of its flights from Frankfurt to Munich. It is a reaction to the ongoing staff shortages that are severely limiting the services that the ground handling unit of Rhine-Main operator, Fraport, is providing to Lufthansa Cargo and other freight carriers. This affects four Lufthansa Cargo freighter flights scheduled between 07JUL22 and 10JUL22.
“The ground handling services of our local handling partner, Fraport subsidiary Bodenverkehrsdienste (BVD), are experiencing an extraordinary reduction in staff, which is currently severely
disrupting our operations,” Head of Lufthansa Cargo Marketing and Communications, Jacqueline Casini, laments. In order to take further load out of the system, the carrier has decided not
only to relocate some flights to Munich (MUC) but to embargo various products at its Frankfurt hub.
This specifically affects the following commodities:
AVI - Animals
AVP - Ornamental fish, worms & crab larvae
The embargo will be in effect up to and including Sunday, 17JUL22, the carrier states. In contrast, the recently imposed embargo on passively refrigerated shipments has meanwhile been lifted, the airline says. The AVI and AVP transit embargo is also in effect at Lufthansa Cargo’s MUC operations, during 07-11JUL22. “In the event of flight schedule adjustments, we will continue to rebook freight to the destination as best as possible,” announces Ms. Casini.
In her statement provided to CargoForwarder Global she recalls that cargo airlines have been asked by airport operator Fraport to reduce freight volumes at Rhine-Main during peak times due to the extremely tight staffing situation at Fraport's ground handling unit BVD.
Simultaneously, BVD’s competitor WISAG emphasizes that the company is well positioned for its partner airlines, both organizationally and in terms of personnel. "The embargo imposed on cargo
flights at weekends does not apply to our customers," emphasizes Carmen Ruck, COO of WISAG Aviation Service Holding.
This summer will be a major challenge for the entire industry, which her company in close cooperation with its clients has been preparing for, she says. "The major task now is to get all process partners together and work collaboratively to find new resilient solutions," states Ms. Ruck.
MUC becomes a white knight
Lufthansa Cargo’s decision to relocate flights to MUC is a compromise to keep freight shipments flowing as best as possible under the current limited conditions - in the interest of the carrier’s customers. “Our colleagues are working flat out to make the necessary adjustments to the system and overall coordination,” assures Ms. Casini. The spokesperson adds to this that her company’s customer will be informed at short notice if their planned cargo is affected by the re-routing of flights.
Munich Airport has no staffing issues, a speaker confirmed upon request. “We are delighted that Lufthansa Cargo is operating these flights via Munich and thus also using our airport for freight-only traffic complementing the carrier’s passenger flights. Against the background of the foreseeable growth in international cargo traffic, Munich offers the best conditions for handling further Lufthansa Cargo flights in the future,” Head of Communications, Ingo Anspach, stated.
QR Cargo intends to increase MUC flights
Airport circles further informed CargoForwarder Global, that Qatar Airways Cargo will operate additional flights to MUC next weekend. Currently, the carrier offers two weekly services in partnership with logistics giant, DB Schenker, linking the Bavarian Airport with Chicago. “We were informed that the Qatari carrier intends to up its freighter operations to/from Munich in the coming months,” a source close to the case told CargoForwarder Global.
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