4 MARCH 2019
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The full opening of the Istanbul New Airport, which was supposed to happen yesterday, 3 March (BTN 4 February) with all operations moving from Ataturk Airport to the new site, has been delayed for a third time, with 5 April now earmarked for the event.
The airport, destined to be the world's biggest, was supposed originally to be fully operational by the end of October last year after its official inauguration by Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whose aircraft was the first to land there.
After officials said the airport was “not yet ready to receive all the flights from the old airport”, the opening was pushed back to 3 March. The transfer of operations is now expected to start at 03:00 on 5 April and conclude at 12:00 on 7 April.
Airlines have been told both airports will operate at reduced capacity during the move, with only 70 flights an hour able to take off and land against the normal capacity of 80, with some delays and cancellations as a result.
• To commemorate the new airport, Future Travel Experience is taking its Europe and Ancillary shows to Istanbul on 18-20 June, rebranding them as Future Travel Experience EMEA, and co-locating the event with The New Airport Show Istanbul.
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