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Berlin's Brandenburg Airport calls for 20,000 volunteers to test operations

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By The Cube
The airport is due to be opened on October 31 after a lengthy nine-year delay.
The airport is due to be opened on October 31 after a lengthy nine-year delay.   -   Copyright  Patrick Pleul/dpa via AP

Check-in, go through security and board at the gate - but never take a flight?

Berlin Airport Services are looking for 20,000 volunteers to take part in "dress rehearsals" for the new Brandenburg International Airport and put all operations to the test.

The trials are planned to "test the airport systems and core processes".

This could include “everyday operations” - such as the check-in of passengers and their baggage, security checks and boarding - to "special cases", including the evacuation of terminal areas.

Lütke Daldrup, CEO of Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH, said the trial operations are "an internationally established standard that will help us to open BER as smoothly as possible".

"We will be pleased to have many Berliners and Brandenburgers present ... helping us to make further improvements and getting to know their airport even before the opening".

Nine years of delay

Operators announced in November that Brandenburg International (BER), also known as Willy Brandt Airport, will open on October 31st, after a nine-year delay.

The original date was planned for October 2011, with Brandenburg International intended to replace both of Berlin's airports in Tegel and Schönefeld. The latter was ranked "worst in the world" by online travel agency eDreams in 2017.

But its unveiling has been postponed on several occasions since 2006, due to construction problems and technical delays.

The most dramatic of these in 2012 saw the opening of the airport cancelled just four weeks before the planned date.

Voters have since backed a proposal to keep operating Berlin’s Tegel Airport, even after Brandenburg International opens.

In November, Daldrup said that there "11 months of hard work in front us" to ensure the airport could be opened "safely and reliably".

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