Things are “moving along fairly well” at Dublin Airport this morning as officials prepare for the arrival of tens of thousands of passengers this weekend.
The new outdoor holdings areas are in place outside Terminal One – after workers installed marquees overnight.
Dublin Airport does not expect to use the holding areas this weekend – but if they’re needed passengers will be sheltered from the rain with access to toilet facilities.
Around 52,000 people will fly out of the airport this weekend – with nearly 4,000 expected in the next four days.
They are indeed... pic.twitter.com/h3y5gFCg4R
— Dublin Airport (@DublinAirport) June 2, 2022
On Breakfast Briefing with Trish Laverty this morning, Air and Travel Editor Eoghan Corry said things are moving “fairly well” so far this morning.
“The big question is how it will work over the weekend because it doesn’t take an awful lot to knock out the arrangements at Dublin Airport as it stands and what happened last Sunday, they lost control of the queues was very, very quickly.”
The new marquees will come into use when terminals get “particularly busy” with passengers who arrive too early ‘triaged’ away from the terminal and into the holding area.
Passengers are advised to arrive two-and-a-half hours before short-haul flights and three-and-a-half hours for long-haul flights.
Those checking in bags are advised to add an extra hour for bag drop or check-in.
Mr Corry said he understands why people might want to arrive sooner.
“Really it is very difficult to say to somebody who has been waiting for three years for the holiday and has a plethora of kids all excited, only come 2.5 hours before your flight or 3.5 for a long-haul flight when people missed their flights last Sunday,” he said
He said some of the strategy behind the holding areas is to scare people off arriving too early.
“That got a really hostile reaction on social media,” he said. “This idea of putting people in holding areas a bit like the cattle marts in the olden days where you are pushed into a side pen and left there until you are brought into play and your flight is about to leave.
“There was a very hostile rection to it. I suspect a lot of that is just to send out the message. Do not arrive hours and hours early for your flights.”
Mr Corry said things are only going to get busier at the airport, with the busiest days coming up towards the end of June.
“If you are to look at the number of flights, the peak day for the year will be June 24th and the key is more people are being put in place every week,” he said.
“It is going the right direction, but everything is under pressure.”
DAA says 167 new security staff members will be working by the end of June, taking the total complement to 700.
That will rise to 800 by the end of August.