LONDON – German carrier Lufthansa (LH) yesterday bade farewell to Berlin Tegel (TXL) Airport with a special Airbus A350 flight, as 30 years of operations come to an end.
The flight in question was LH1955 which flew between TXL and Munich Airport (MUC). This flight was operated by D-AIXI, one of the Airbus A350-900 aircraft in the fleet.
The two and a half-year-old aircraft departed TXL for the final time at 2204L before arriving at MUC at 2257, around 25 minutes late. Typically, this flight is services by either an Airbus A319 or A320, according to data from FlightRadar24.
An Emotional Farewell
From the photos plastered on social media, it appears that LH gave TXL a considerable send-off. Staff members were gathering on outside viewing areas watching the last LH flight depart with a projection of “Danke TXL” as well as a #DankeTXL sign onboard the aircraft.
Berlin Schonefeld (SXF) has also shut down as well and becomes BER’s Terminal 5. As for TXL, the last year hasn’t exactly been the year it wanted to close on.
A COVID-based Goodbye
TXL had to close its doors for two months back in May this year due to the lack of demand caused by the global pandemic which is still ongoing. On top of this, the airport also had a security staff strike in 2019, which disrupted operations further.
Whilst the pandemic wasn’t overtly responsible for the closure of TXL, it contributed to it in some sort of way, especially with airport consolidation being more of a focus for the German government.
End of an Era
For TXL, this is a considerable end of an era that spanned back to the airport’s creation in 1948, living through the significant disruption caused by the USSR and Western Allies as the land was split up and controlled by different entities.
BER will hopefully offer a cleaner start to its life than the likes of TXL, especially as times have changed since the times of the Cold War.
What we do know, is that the historical significance of TXL will never match that of BER, but has the chance to offer a much-needed glimmer of hope going into a post-COVID world.
Featured Image: Lufthansa Airbus A350-900. Photo Credit: John Leivaditis