Budapest Airport to expand long-haul flights and add new destinations
Recently, there was a change of personnel at Budapest Airport. Kam Jandu, the previous chief commercial officer (CCO) has been promoted to the role of chief executive officer (CEO). He has replaced Chris Dinsdale, who spent two years as head of the company. The question arises: who is Jandu and what are his plans with the capital’s airport?
Jandu, having been employed in the field of aviation since the late 90’s, started his work at Budapest Airport in 2009 as an aviation director. Rising to the role of CCO in 2014, he took control of the enterprise in the middle of April after 14 years of experience. In a recent interview, we could get an insight of what to expect from him. He has a lot of knowledge in the industry, and even more ideas on how to make the airport prosperous, writes Aviation Week.
One of the main promises of the new CEO is the rebuilding of the airport’s pre-covid capacities. These include bringing back investments into long-haul flights which previously departed from Budapest.
“The real focus for growth at this time is long-haul. We had Toronto, New York, Chicago and American Airlines’ hub at Philadelphia before the pandemic and we’d obviously really like them back,”
he said in the interview.
Jandu has plans not only in the west, but also in the eastern direction. His aims are to recover the two Chinese destination cities which the airport lost during covid. With these goals in sight, it’s only a matter of time until Budapest will be able to transfer passengers to the USA or China without connecting flights. This would be a huge feat for the company.
However, there are plans for expansion in Europe as well. Lyon, Bordeaux, Toulouse, Glasgow and Newcastle are all possible destinations Budapest Airport aims to establish flights to. Aviation ties with Great Britain are especially important, as the UK is the airport’s largest, most lucrative market.
Source: Budapest Airport – Kam Jandu, CEO of Budapest Airport
The expansion of the airport is not constrained only to the number of flight destinations. It will also mean expanding the capacity of passengers it can handle. Terminal 1, which has been closed since 2012, is expected to reopen in 2026. This renovation indicates an increase in the airport’s passenger count by over two million a year. This will make it possible to begin the construction of Terminal 3, which will start operations in 2030 according to current plans. It is prognosticated that this year, 14 million travellers will step foot at Budapest Airport. By 2024, this number will rise over the pre-pandemic levels of 16 million.
Balázs Bogáts will step into the now vacant shoes of Jandu as CCO. Having spent a decade at the now defunct Hungarian airline company, Malév, he joined the company back in 2011. All in all, the capital’s airport seems to be going towards a prosperous future in the current circumstances.
Glad to see the operators of the Budapest airport express their desire to reestablish direct long-haul routes to North America. LOT Polish Airlines and others have taken over those passengers sending them through their hub airports to Budapest. I have gotten to know Chopin Airport quite well over the last few years trying to get to Budapest. Wizz stated for the record that they have no interest at the moment in direct flights to North America so it will only be foreign carriers establishing these routes. How I miss Malev. Don’t worry Hungarians. You will be able to fly direct to Bangladesh, Pakistan and Uzbekistan for your holidays courtesy of the Hungarian carrier Wizz.
These are bold plans. Did anyone check with Uncle Klaus and St. Greta though? It’s no secret that the globalist-socialist elites want to reduce people’s ability to fly places, mostly by pricing us out, under the ludicrous guise of Saving The Planet®. It would be very unwise to sink all this money into expending and supping up our airport, only for Billy & Co. to send another “pandemic” our way and ground us for good. Or assign a carbon quota to each citizen…
Nice plans, but before the a/p has plans to attract even more o/s flights, consider expanding and improving Passport and Customs control because it’s already hugely inadequate to cope with the amount of simultaneous arrivals.
Let’s not even mention tha a/p’s forecourt where there is no seating for those who are waiting for check-in counters to open, the forecourt is incredibly small and way out of sync with the inner area. The café that’s out there is making a killing from all the people who have to go there to buy something just so that they can sit to wait for their check-in counter to open.