Earlier this week, Munich Aiport opened the doors to its new Satellite Terminal 2 and invited experienced travelers to put the new building through several simulations to make sure systems, signage and technology was working properly. This was done in coordination with Lufthansa who also had their employees there to make sure their systems are working as well.
A friend of mine, FlyerTalk and VFT’s ‘ClaudiSTR’, happened to be one of the lucky few that had a chance to walk the terminal. She was asked to play the role of a passenger in several different capacities throughout the day. As you’ll read in her review, you’ll see that she ‘flew’ First Class on several flights and had earned approximately 144,000 status miles and was well on her way to becoming a HON Circle member after having such a busy day.
From what Claudi has to say, it looks like the new terminal is on track for a smooth opening later this year. A few more systems are left to test and a few aesthetic construction projects need to be completed, but it looks like we’ll have a winner with ‘ST2’.
You’ll notice that there are no photos that accompany Claudi’s write-up. This is because there was no photography allowed during the testing. Sorry.
Without further ado, here is Claudi’s look at the new Terminal:
HON in one day or the first day of trial operations of the new satellite of T2 at Munich Airport
Gorgeous! In just one day I flew YVR-MUC-BOM, DXB-MUC-SSJ, ARN-MUC-HND and MEX-MUC-CDG, learned about several gates of the new satellite at Munich airport and was allowed to run around in the satellite and was seeing everything.
Yes, looking was possible, taking pictures impossible. This report has to get along without photos because photography was not allowed just like smoking.
The day started at 10 am with registration of the participants in this trial operations day in a dedicated room at T2. All participants were given a green vest and we were divided into 8 groups. 105 participants enrolled for today, round about 95-100 appeared.
Water, coffee and tea were available. Meanwhile, our coordinator (red vest) told us, how we are going to test during the day. Today we were supposed to test the flight connections, the signage and signs and should detect the ways of making a connection. We would arrive from Vancouver (YVR) and connect either to Mumbai (BOM), Frankfurt (FRA) or Paris (CDG).
This was followed by a safety briefing, because the satellite is still under construction. The opening is planned for April 2016 and they are currently working on interior construction.
We took buses to drive directly to the satellite, because the Person Transport System (PTS) has not yet been approved by the building authorities. At present, the English operating papers are translated by the manufacturer Bombardier and then they will be approved hopefully soon.The PTS will have three sections, which are sure to be very interesting for testing (Schengen, non-Schengen clean, non-Schengen unclean).
In general, this is the data of the satellite:
– The building is about 630 m long (T2 compared 930 m) and up to 250 m wide
– K-Gates: Schengen gates, level 04
– L-Gates: Non-Schengen gates (clean), Level 05
– M-Gates: Incoming non-clean Non-Schengen gates, level 06, top Level of building with good views
– The gate numbers count from north to south, beginning with 01 and ending with 30. In the East, even numbers, in the West the odd numbers.
– Bus gates shouldn’t be at the satellite. The airport and Lufthansa hope to be able to handle all flights with the opening of the satellite from flightbridges. Nevertheless, there are still 6 J-Gates that would be suitable for buses.
– LH will operate 5 lounges at the satellite. FCL on the top floor for Schengen and non-Schengen flights with internal passport control, a Senator and a C-Lounge at the Schengen and the Non-Schengen area.
– In the middle of the satellite there’s a central area, where the PTS in the basement has its railway station and where also the exchange of non-Schengen / Schengen levels take place. There, the immigration is also situated as well as security control for the incoming unclean lights.
Arriving at the terminal we walked with our coordinator to our first arrival gate K24. Arrival was declared to be from YVR. We were given boarding passes for our connecting flight, in my case next connecting flight is to BOM. Twice as an F-passenger. Since we were less than the planned 15 participants in our group always some participants received two boarding passes. This was important for IT and for the smooth running so that flights can be closed.
The flight numbers were all settled in the 43xx range, to Mumbai we were flying on LH 4316. We came from YVR unclean and had to go through the arrival security to be clean afterwards. We used the security for the first time during that trial operation day and was sharp as other securities at airports.
Directly behind this security the entrance to the FCL is very well located. Unfortunately I was not allowed to use it although I was flying First today. The interior construction is in full swing.
Departure gate to Mumbai was L07, so the way was quite long and allowed views of the construction site. Good to see was the area that is going to be used as shops and duty free. At the level of K in the center of the building close to the tower the Viktualienmarkt will be recreated with a few stalls. All lounges have been well situated close to the middle of the building. Also large smoking lounges are available, each in the K- and L-level at the gates 11 and 23. The displays in the satellite were working well, they showed exclusively the test flights with their gates. We could orientate us there, otherwise the departure gate was also specified on the boarding pass.
The LH-staff worked the first time today in the satellite, even for them it all was new. They made the flights in strict accordance with the usual rules, they practised the announcements, they did prioboarding and dispatched finishing messages. The test cases included further op-ups, waitlist confirmation and handling overbooking.
In the finger of L07-gate, we learned that we will fly next from Dubai, for that we went to K11. From Dubai we came unclean again, went through the security again and flew -in my case- to Sarajevo, also from non-Schengen.
For lunch, a large buffet with two hot dishes (pasta or chicken ;-)) was served. The chicken was pork today. Preliminary a salad and as a dessert fruitsalad. Water was there again. The catering provided LSG. The area between K24 and K26 served as canteen.
After lunch we arrived at the Schengen area K from Stockholm and had some trouble the first time. First we couldn’t get into the finger and then out of the finger. A time-controlled switch of the doors, which didn’t work, was the cause. We flew to Haneda / Tokyo and had to pass by the passport control at the level L. Then we went back to K24, where we mimed the arriving passengers from Mexico City and travelled further on to Paris. Unclean arriving we passed the first security and went direction central area over the escalator back to the Schengen level K, while moving through passport control and through customs.
At the end of the test day, we gathered in front of the satellite and took the buses back to T2, where we’ve been registered again, thus ensuring that nobody was forgotten at the construction site.
A goodie bag was waiting for us: This contained a bright blue towel with the M-emblem, a cup, also with M emblem, a red Remove before flight-tag from Munich Airport and a lanyard of München 5-star airport.
It was great fun!
Both as well the organization and the conduct of a trial operation was very exciting as the satellite building itself. As far as one can judge, despite construction site, it is an open and bright building. All around everywhere windows and climate zones, which provide a great spaciousness. In the middle part of the building are all the shops, lounges, staircases and elevators, where it is certainly going to be busy and where passengers will congregate. On other hand, there will be quiet corners at the outer gates, where you can relax on (quite hard) recliners. Great are the many power outlets that will be available on the benches and green and red lights at the beginning and end of each treadmill. Visually, the building compliments Terminal 2 very nicely , which greatly makes the orientation very easy in my view.
I am looking forward to seeing the satellite in April including lounges in live operation.
Note for those, who are interested:
In March there are still some trial operation days on which applications are still accepted. Many trials days will also look different. Further on there will be checked baggage, the PTS will work, there will be an evacuation drill and the special care of eg Children and wheelchair users are tested.
Speaking of HON in one day, here is what I ‘flew’ during the testing:
YVR-MUC BOM: 9142 Distance Miles, 27426 status miles in F, two F boarding passes: 54,852 miles
DXB-MUC-SJJ: 2839 Distance in miles F and J, the 2500 package miles 2x J, total: 19,195 miles
ARN-MUC-TYO: The 2500 package miles for 2x J, 5829 Distance in miles F and J, total: 34,145 miles
MEX-MUC-CDG: 6127 Distance in miles F and J, the 2500 package miles for 2x J, total: 35,635 miles
Unfortunately, the achieved miles during the flight today altogether was 143827 status miles. This is not sufficient for HON-qualification. I just have to do four times more another Probebetriebstag and again lucky in the allocation of boarding passes and my HON would be in my pocket.