MIAMI – Ethiopian Airlines (ET) recently announced the opening of its newest terminal, the first to be opened since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Addis Ababa Bole International Airport (ADD), ET’s headquarters, is the home of this brand new contactless terminal.

According to the airline, the terminal was built with Bio Security and Bio-Safety at the forefront of the design. Some of the main features include a check-in hall with sixty check-in counters and thirty self-check-in kiosks, along with three contact gates for wide-bodied aircraft and ten remote contact gates.

In a recent press release, Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam stated he is “very pleased to witness the realization of a brand-new terminal,” and emphasized its ability to help keep passengers safe in response to the pandemic.

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport. Photo: Wiki Commons

Slowed, But Not Stopped

Ethiopian Airlines currently operates a fleet of 126 aircraft, with the Boeing 787-8 being the most widely used long-range aircraft for passenger service. The airline also has 47 aircraft on order, including 10 Airbus A350-900XWB.

Despite being impacted by COVID-19, ET has not only been able to stay afloat but has also been stable during the crisis. As recently reported by Bloomberg, the airline has been able to keep up with their regular costs, mostly through their increase in cargo flights as passenger demand dropped.

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport. Photo: Wiki Commons

Adjusting to the New Normal

The carrier has become the first to set the stage for what the future of airport infrastructure may look like. Airlines and airports across the world have been scrambling to implement new cleaning standards and safety precautions to help protect passengers from the COVID-19 virus.

Many companies have required face masks to be worn in the airport terminals and also on board aircraft, and in Finland’s Helinski-Vantaa Airport (HEL), trials are currently underway to determine the effectiveness of using dogs to detect the COVID-19 virus.

Featured image: Ethiopian Airlines. Photo: Shon Fridman