Blend of low-cost and legacy is best way to serve customers
Interviewed by Air Transport News, Kjeld Zacho Jorgensen, CEO of Billund Airport, says that a diversity of different types of airlines provides the best choice for passengers. “We want all kinds of airlines because we want to have a diversity of airlines, both low-cost and legacy carriers, because we think this is the best way we can serve our customers, and as an airport it will make us less vulnerable to the developments of the air transport industry,” he says.
In answer to the question of how easy it is to manage two different types of airlines in the same terminals, Jorgensen answers: “Well, we differentiate for everybody, not only between low-cost and legacy carriers. Each company has its own way of having things done and we try to cater for that and serve them as they want to be served, so for us it’s not so much a question of whether it’s low-cost or if it’s a legacy carrier, it’s more a question of what the specific customer wants.”
He says that low-cost carriers are not winning at Billund, illustrated by the fact that Lufthansa expanded its passenger numbers there by 40% last year, Air France expanded the market to Paris by 100% and KLM registered a growth of 6-8%, even though Ryanair has a strong presence at the airport.
Jorgensen says he wants more destinations added to the total tally of 40. For example, Helsinki is not currently served, Eastern Europe is underserved, and “we would like to get back to Nice”.
Air Transport News
[pictured: Primera Boeing 737 at Billund; courtesy Billund Airport]