GBTA Welcomes EU Suspension of Airport Slot Rule until 24 October 2020, to Ease Industry Crisis following the Coronavirus Pandemic

London (31 March 2020) – The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) – are delighted that the European Union have agreed to suspend the airport slot rule until 24 October 2020. The rule obliged airlines to use a minimum of 80% of their take-off and landing slots in order to secure them for the following year, putting additional financial burdens on the airlines. In light of the current Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing uncertainty, GBTA, along with other assosiations and other airline associations, lobbied the EU to make this temporary change to the ruling.

Following a deal reached last week by the EU’s 27 Member states, the European parliament voted in its first-ever remote session in Brussels to suspend the EU slots rule. The last time the EU waived the airport slots rule was in 2009 following the financial crisis.

“European flights fell by 60% last week and we have started to see several major European airlines forced to ground their fleets. The new ruling will ensure airports and airlines can continue to plan towards a recovery, safe in the knowledge that slots have been protected.” Commented Scott Solombrino, Executive Director & COO, GBTA.


About the Global Business Travel Association
The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is the world’s premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA’s 9,000-plus members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA and the GBTA Foundation deliver world-class education, events, research, advocacy and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts. To learn how business travel drives lasting business growth, visit www.gbta.org.


Nikki Stimson, +44 (0) 7764618199, [email protected]