Graphic Business News

Ghana Airports Company restricts access to T3 departure

By: Maclean Kwofi
The departure hall of the Terminal Three
The departure hall of the Terminal Three

TRAVELLERS with valid documents, their escorts and persons intending to do formal airport-related business will now be the only persons allowed access to the Terminal Three of the Kotoka International Airport (KIA).

After the terminal building was opened for business last year, the departure hall is always busy with travellers, their escorts and persons who have no official business at the terminal, but come to admire the edifice from inside the departure hall.

This creates inconvenience for the travelling public and impedes free flow of foot traffic.

The Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) has therefore issued a statement restricting access for only official business.

The new terminal is designed to handle up to five million passengers a year.

According to the GACL, at peak, the terminal will have the capacity to process up to about 1,250 passengers. It also has a fully automated baggage handling system capable of handling about 3,500 bags an hour.

The new facility has a large retail and commercial area, three business lounges, six fixed links and seven air bridges expandable to eight.

In respect of parking space, the facility’s parking facility has the capacity to handle about 700 cars. The facility has five levels on 45,000 square metres.

It has six contact stands for code electronic aircraft and an extra two remote stands. At the departure level, it has 56 check-in desks, 30 passport control centres and eight security lanes.

It is also a great enabler for growth in passenger numbers for airlines, extra taxes for GACL and increased tourists for Ghana.

With it, Ghana stands tall among its African peers when it comes to countries with world-class airports. From a national perspective, that is a sense of pride as well as an avenue for revenue generation.

Just by the face value, international airlines are reported to have been cashing in on the facility through passenger volumes while the government, through GACL and the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), is raking in extra revenue.

Connecting traffic
In the corporate field, the Africa World Airlines Limited (AWA), a Ghanaian-registered private airline operator is arguably the airline that is benefiting most. The airline recently reported that the new terminal has seen its connecting traffic grow by 400 per cent to 150 passengers per week.

The growth is between September 15, 2018 when the new terminal was opened to the travelling public and February this year.

The Head of Commercial of AWA, Mr Richard Kyereh, indicated that passengers’ facilitation and transfer had become seamless since the new terminal became operational.

According to him, passengers from neighbouring countries such as Nigeria, Liberia and Sierra Leone were choosing Ghana as their preferred destination for connecting.

That, he said, was even more than the airline's expectations for the period, prompting it to increase its fleet of aircraft from seven to eight in order to meet the increase in passenger traffic.