The rapidly spreading coronavirus pandemic and the travel restrictions imposed worldwide as a result have triggered the return of an unprecedented number of holidaymakers and travellers since mid-March.
In just over a month, the repatriation programmes of various European governments and numerous tourism providers have almost been fully completed.
All airlines in the Lufthansa Group have supported their respective governments by providing return flights.
Since March 13th, Lufthansa Group airlines have repatriated around 90,000 holidaymakers and travellers.
In total, 437 special flights departed from 106 airports worldwide - from New Zealand all the way to Chile – on their way to Europe.
Eleven more will take place in the next few days.
The governments of Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Belgium, in addition to tour operators and cruise lines, have ordered these return flights from Air Dolomiti, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Edelweiss, Eurowings, Lufthansa and Swiss.
For now, Lufthansa’s last special flight is expected to arrive in Frankfurt today from Lima.
In addition, the Lufthansa Group has already operated 94 cargo special flights with relief supplies on board.
To date, Eurowings has also already operated 27 “harvest helper flights” with approximately 2,500 passengers on board, with nine more currently planned.
Lufthansa and Eurowings have been commissioned by the federal foreign office in Berlin to fly more than 34,000 Germans and EU citizens back to Germany from their holiday homes and places of residence, some of which in remote locations.
Among the passengers was a girls’ choir from Hamburg, which was flown home from Baku (Azerbaijan).
The return flights were planned, prepared and carried out as charters within a few days. In some cases, passengers from the destination country were also on board the outward flight.