Philadelphia International Airport is much more like the busy scene it was before the COVID-19 pandemic.
When travel stopped in the spring of 2020, only 14 concessions remained in operation – the lowest total on record for the airport. Airport terminals have been reduced to the essentials – a cafe, newsstand, and restaurants with delivery options. Hours have been reduced to match the reduced number of flights entering and leaving the airport.
Now, as displacement rates have started to move closer to pre-pandemic figures, more than 120 concessions and stores are open throughout the airport. Further reopenings are expected in the coming months, including a Burger King in Terminal E and a LifeWTR lounge near Terminal A-East.
“Some of the more recent re-openings are Spanx, Brighton and PGA Tour Shop in the B / C connector,” said Megan O’Connell, director of marketing and customer service. “As we approach the holiday season, we know that we will have a good variety of stores open for customers shopping for last minute gifts.”
Yet the travel industry is not yet out of the woods.
After a surge in summer travel, many airlines are reporting a drop in travel demand as the highly contagious delta variant continues to spread across the country. Southwest Airlines announced that it reduced his fall flight schedule for September and October.
1.46 million people passed through security checkpoints across the country on Wednesday, up from 2.15 million on September 15, 2019, according to TSA data.
The 2021 figure is nearly three times higher than the 577,847 people who traveled on September 15, 2020, but it shows that travel demand is still below pre-pandemic levels.
The airport had 173 concessions and restaurants in operation in 2019, O’Connell said.
“No location has closed permanently due to the pandemic, however, some had expired leases and are in the process of being re-leased or are in the process of converting to a new concept,” O’Connell told PhillyVoice in a report. E-mail.
Hiring employees for the newly reopened stores and restaurants has been a challenge, O’Connell said. Some traders have encountered hiring difficulties and have had to delay reopening due to the national labor shortage.
There are still jobs available. Lists can be found at phl.org/emplois.
Earlier this year, the airport launched a program which allows travelers to order food to be delivered to their door from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.