Moderators: richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
chonetsao
Topic Author
Posts: 593
Joined: Sun Nov 06, 2005 3:55 pm

Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 11:27 am

At this moment most of discussion on COVID-19 has been concentrated on airlines and travel itself. One of the elements are less discussed or not discussed at all. I think it is in fact an interesting topic to explore among A-netters.

For last decade, what considered as a successful airport is its retail offering. Airports design jammed shopping malls and arcade immediately after security check. This is becoming so dominant in European and Asian airports designs. In some airports, instead let passengers through the security check and walk straight to the gate, the airport owners intentionally place a narrow zig-zag arcade lane through a giant shopping mall or duty free shops to force passengers get jammed into this single yet circled lane.

Obviously now we know, this bottom neck forced feed lane to lure travellers spending money on meaningless duty frees are one of the biggest risks to spread airborne diseases. It slows the traffic flow and force people to rub shoulders and create unnecessary obstacles.

Thus here is the question, will this shopping mall maze in airport after security became history after the COVID-19? Will any government see the potential danger of an inadequate designed for spaces and social distancing in the airport shopping maze and come up legislation to force airport make sure there is open and direct walking ways instead of the forced shopping experience? For this matter, I like most airports in the USA, where hardly any airports have this shopping trump convenience mentality. But clearly, in many airports of Europe and Asia, something needs to be changed and fast. What is your opinion on this?
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 7754
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 11:45 am

Are you presuming there won't be an effective vaccine that makes proximity irrelevant? If that's your starting point the presence of shopping arcades is among the least of the worries of airports and carriers.

One of the milestones in airport mallification: LHR T4 opens in 1986.
 
AeroVega
Posts: 274
Joined: Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:32 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 12:23 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Are you presuming there won't be an effective vaccine that makes proximity irrelevant? If that's your starting point the presence of shopping arcades is among the least of the worries of airports and carriers.


I would make a distinction between a "normal" shopping mall, like AMS, where you do not have to enter a crowded shop if you don't want to, and those unavoidable duty-free mazes that passengers are forced in to, like HEL or even worse, LGW. If the latter would disappear as a result of the coronavirus outbreak then that would at least be a good thing coming out of this pandemic.
 
mxaxai
Posts: 1807
Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:29 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 12:27 pm

Do I like the mall-ification of airports? No, it's absolutely horrible for travellers. Sometimes the signs guiding you to the gates are completely lost in all the bling of various stores. Nobody enjoys navigating through all the stores when their flight leaves in a few minutes.

Will COVID-19 change anything? Certainly not. Shops are one of the primary income sources for airports and there are enough passengers that actually buy stuff.
 
chonetsao
Topic Author
Posts: 593
Joined: Sun Nov 06, 2005 3:55 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 12:39 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Are you presuming there won't be an effective vaccine that makes proximity irrelevant? If that's your starting point the presence of shopping arcades is among the least of the worries of airports and carriers.

One of the milestones in airport mallification: LHR T4 opens in 1986.


I am not assume anything.

I am only thinking what lesson we could learn from this pandemic in terms of air travel. Airport with compulsory bottle neck shopping arcade design is a danger to travel public when you consider all airborne gems and diseases. My emphasis is whether regulator would realise it or not, or airport operator realise this or not.

Also to other posters, I am not against shopping malls, but thoroughly against shopping malls that force travel public jamming on a narrow zig zag path way. Some airports got it right while some are not (think FRA VS FCO as example, where FRA got it almost right while FCO is a disgrace).
 
ewt340
Posts: 1239
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 7:22 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 12:53 pm

If we don't get vaccine or proper medications that could help with the virus then yes, many retailers inside the airport would see less business. BUT this correlate to the less passengers number because of the economic impact rather than lack of interest.
 
B777LRF
Posts: 2686
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2008 4:23 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 12:59 pm

Just to put some numbers to this discussion: CPH derives around 75% of their revenue from "non-aeronautcial activities". That is renting of space for shops, lounges and restaurants, parking fees and concession fees. In CPH, retailers are paying 25% of their turnover in concession fees + rent. Hence the saying, "the only company in the airport consistently making money, is the airport", and it goes long way to explain why things are so hideously overpriced in airports.

It's not without reason airports are unkindly referred to as shopping malls with expensive car parking, and a bit of something to do with aircraft on the side.
Signature. You just read one.
 
patrickw421
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 6:49 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:09 pm

I also hate the set up in those airports where travelers are forced to pass through the shopping area without alternatives, but I highly doubt this will be changed because of the COVID-19.

Social distance is still much longer in those shops anyhow than on the airplane, especially with reduced pax numbers for the time to come and I don't think anyone will worry their time passing through the shops than the time sitting in flight. On the other hand with reduced flight numbers in the foreseeable future you could even argue that the retail income will become even more important for airport operators and they might have incentives to further increase retails offerings in the airport to capture more revenue, if any company is still interested in setting up shops in the airport that is.
 
User avatar
DL717
Posts: 2148
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 10:53 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:17 pm

B777LRF wrote:
Just to put some numbers to this discussion: CPH derives around 75% of their revenue from "non-aeronautcial activities". That is renting of space for shops, lounges and restaurants, parking fees and concession fees. In CPH, retailers are paying 25% of their turnover in concession fees + rent. Hence the saying, "the only company in the airport consistently making money, is the airport", and it goes long way to explain why things are so hideously overpriced in airports.

It's not without reason airports are unkindly referred to as shopping malls with expensive car parking, and a bit of something to do with aircraft on the side.


Without those “malls”, the operating costs will be increased to the carriers and added to your airfare. Concessions assist in balancing the costs of the airport to the airlines. You’ll pay for it either way. You can either have a quick bite before a flight or sit there chomping on that bag of nuts you brought with you and then enjoy a bag of pretzels on the plane.
Welcome to Nothingburgers. May I take your order?
 
davidjohnson6
Posts: 800
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:10 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:22 pm

The number of shops at most airports is geared towards the number of pax passing through. If passenger numbers continue to be more than 20% below 2019 (never mind the 95 % below 2019 that they are right now), expect to see a significant proportion of shops closing their doors, once the lease / concession contract gives them the right to exit without the risk of major penalties
 
User avatar
exFWAOONW
Posts: 726
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 10:32 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:43 pm

I don’t care for them and do my best to not support them by buying from them. But I will admit, the ability to buy some Imodium before a long flight might convince me they are a necessary evil.
Is just me, or is flying not as much fun anymore?
 
User avatar
JetBuddy
Posts: 2563
Joined: Wed Dec 25, 2013 1:04 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:50 pm

Even 15 years ago, OSL made more money on duty free and other shops than they made from the airlines via taxes and landing fees.

So, I don't think that will stop. Not at all.
 
raylee67
Posts: 856
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:06 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 1:59 pm

In the worst case where there is no medication and no vaccine, the 1918 Spanish Flu can be used as a reference of what will happen eventually. By the 3rd winter season, most of the people in the world will have been infected and there will be some level of immunity among most people. It means that, at the latest by 2023, the pandemic will end and things will get back to the "old normal". Of course, we would have witnessed tens of millions of deaths in these 3 years. But at the end of the day, out of 7 billion people, 99% will still be here.

Shopping malls, restaurants and recreational facilities in airports are planned for use for 20+ years. And when you plan a construction or renovation now, it most likely will not be completed until 2 or 3 years later anyway. So the "new normal" in the next 3 years is not going to affect what is planned to be there for the next 30 years. There may be slight changes in terms of how to keep things clean, etc., but the general facilities will be there.
319/20/21 332/33 342/43/45 359/51 388 707 717 732/36/3G/38/39 74R/42/43/44/4E/48 757 762/63 772/7L/73/7W 788/89 D10 M80 135/40/45 175/90 DH1/4 CRJ/R7 L10
AY LH OU SR BA FI
AA DL UA NW AC CP WS FL NK PD
CI NH SQ KA CX JL BR OZ TG KE CA CZ NZ JQ RS
 
AirFiero
Posts: 1546
Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:43 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 5:34 pm

raylee67 wrote:
In the worst case where there is no medication and no vaccine, the 1918 Spanish Flu can be used as a reference of what will happen eventually. By the 3rd winter season, most of the people in the world will have been infected and there will be some level of immunity among most people. It means that, at the latest by 2023, the pandemic will end and things will get back to the "old normal". Of course, we would have witnessed tens of millions of deaths in these 3 years. But at the end of the day, out of 7 billion people, 99% will still be here.

Shopping malls, restaurants and recreational facilities in airports are planned for use for 20+ years. And when you plan a construction or renovation now, it most likely will not be completed until 2 or 3 years later anyway. So the "new normal" in the next 3 years is not going to affect what is planned to be there for the next 30 years. There may be slight changes in terms of how to keep things clean, etc., but the general facilities will be there.


More of what I’ve seen reported is that a lot more people have already been infected and either had very mild symptoms or none at all. I’d bet this will be over WAY sooner than later. The only thing that concerns me is that a more virulent strain will emerge. But if there’s a next time, we will be ready.
 
smflyer
Posts: 248
Joined: Tue May 01, 2018 4:44 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:10 pm

I don't think such an extensive zig zag mall style would come to the US since a large majority of US air travelers are traveling on business and simply trying to get to their gate or get a quick bite to eat before their flights. Same thing with leisure travelers in the US, most of them aren't looking to do much shopping while at the airport and really just want a quick bite and get to the gate. If anything, non-hub US airports tend to focus on passenger comfort by trying to make airports efficient to get around, plenty of wifi and plugs so you can entertain yourself while waiting at the airport. This makes sense since most US airports are owned by municipalities and their function is to facilitate air travel rather than to improve revenue. While US airports do have some of those same "mall" type of stores, I find them to be non-intrusive in the sense that they are put in high traffic areas where someone is going to have to walk through to get to their gate anyways. This is akin to having an ad on the bottom of a YouTube video whereas the LGW airport is more like the ad that stops your video and forces you to watch for 15 seconds.
 
Jamie514
Posts: 154
Joined: Thu May 18, 2017 4:36 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:12 pm

Right now its still ok to be in the supermarket so long as you can keep distance. We can do this in an airport shop too. Even on a full demand day, it would be possible to simply order the store to tarp over its wares, and usher people through maintaining physical distancing rules. The places we cannot do this when the air travel system is being used fully, are airplanes themselves and the gate area waiting rooms.

When we've addressed how it will be safe to be in these other confined places again, we will have likely automatically addressed this problem about duty free shops within that solution as well.
 
slcdeltarumd11
Posts: 4698
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2004 7:30 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:40 pm

Stores will remain in malls. Covid 19 won't last forever. Whenever air travel picks back up lots of things will change masks, gloves and spacing might be the new normal but people will always forget stuff and have time to kill in airports. The stores will need to adjust and maybe a limited number of people in a store and offer gloves but they will have shopping.
 
davidjohnson6
Posts: 800
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:10 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:50 pm

To those who disbelieve the retail model will come to the their nearest big airport, I would encourage you to visit https://maps.stanstedairport.com/ and then zoom in on the main airport terminal. Gatwick (LGW) is just a weak and mild imitation of what Stansted achieves from a retail point of view !
After clearing central security, one *must* walk past 2 shops, then walk through duty free, then walk through a narrow path with a further 29 shops. At that point, you then reach the main departure loung seating area. There is a more direct non-retail path from central security to the main departure loung area, but you need an airport security badge - i.e. all airport employees have one but passengers do not

Stansted used to be relatively easy to make your way through from check-in desk (when they existed) through security and onto the departure, but the reluctance of airlines to pay airport fees meant that the airport needed to find other ways to seek revenue - namely monetise pax directly and place retail shopping obstacles in their path. If you've flown out of this airport dozens of times before, you get immune to this eventually but most passengers travelling through are leisure who don't fly every month and end up having their attention distracted by something shiny and expensive. Annoying for pax, but for the airport it's highly effective
Last edited by davidjohnson6 on Sun May 03, 2020 6:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
CURQ400
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 10:29 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:50 pm

Standing in line at check-in/bag drop, standing in line at Security, standing in line at Customs/immigration, seating area prior to flight, queuing for boarding and actually being seated on the plane. Every single one of these has me in far closer proximity to others than that duty free area I have to walk through.

So no, I’d say this is pretty low on the list.
 
SCQ83
Posts: 5676
Joined: Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:32 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 6:52 pm

davidjohnson6 wrote:
The number of shops at most airports is geared towards the number of pax passing through. If passenger numbers continue to be more than 20% below 2019 (never mind the 95 % below 2019 that they are right now), expect to see a significant proportion of shops closing their doors, once the lease / concession contract gives them the right to exit without the risk of major penalties


Rather than closing the shops, maybe there is a change in brands.

For instance LHR T5 and CDG T2 have an arcade of luxury shops (Gucci, Vuitton, Dior, Chanel, etc.). Compared to other more secondary airports I find some of those stores really big. Those stores are pretty much entirely targeted to the Chinese and Asian customer. With that tourist (at least in the short term) vanishing (or coming back spending less), there is not much sense for those stores anymore in the near future.
 
moa999
Posts: 923
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:37 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Sun May 03, 2020 10:56 pm

Standing in line at check-in/bag drop, standing in line at Security, standing in line at Customs/immigration, seating area prior to flight, queuing for boarding and actually being seated on the plane. Every single one of these has me in far closer proximity to others than that duty free area I have to walk through.


Absolutely. All of those as are far greater concerns.

Id think both airports and Airlines will be very concerned about the introduction of minimum density requirements for gate areas and aircraft.
 
raylee67
Posts: 856
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:06 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Mon May 04, 2020 9:37 am

AirFiero wrote:

More of what I’ve seen reported is that a lot more people have already been infected and either had very mild symptoms or none at all. I’d bet this will be over WAY sooner than later. The only thing that concerns me is that a more virulent strain will emerge. But if there’s a next time, we will be ready.


Yep agree. Sweden has announced that they expect to have 26% of Stockholm's population to be infected by May 1. And samples of 3000 people from NY state reveals that 20% of NYC samples carry antibodies (i.e. have been infected at some point).

But I am definitely hoarding masks. Even if it's not a mutated strain of this virus, it would be something else. In the last 18 years, we had seen SARS, MERS, H1N1 swine flu and now this. We were just lucky that for whatever reasons, SARS and MERS were not that contagious and Swine Flu is not that deadly. Who knows what the next one will be.
319/20/21 332/33 342/43/45 359/51 388 707 717 732/36/3G/38/39 74R/42/43/44/4E/48 757 762/63 772/7L/73/7W 788/89 D10 M80 135/40/45 175/90 DH1/4 CRJ/R7 L10
AY LH OU SR BA FI
AA DL UA NW AC CP WS FL NK PD
CI NH SQ KA CX JL BR OZ TG KE CA CZ NZ JQ RS
 
max999
Posts: 1218
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 11:05 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Mon May 04, 2020 10:05 am

chonetsao wrote:
At this moment most of discussion on COVID-19 has been concentrated on airlines and travel itself. One of the elements are less discussed or not discussed at all. I think it is in fact an interesting topic to explore among A-netters.

For last decade, what considered as a successful airport is its retail offering. Airports design jammed shopping malls and arcade immediately after security check. This is becoming so dominant in European and Asian airports designs. In some airports, instead let passengers through the security check and walk straight to the gate, the airport owners intentionally place a narrow zig-zag arcade lane through a giant shopping mall or duty free shops to force passengers get jammed into this single yet circled lane.

Obviously now we know, this bottom neck forced feed lane to lure travellers spending money on meaningless duty frees are one of the biggest risks to spread airborne diseases. It slows the traffic flow and force people to rub shoulders and create unnecessary obstacles.

Thus here is the question, will this shopping mall maze in airport after security became history after the COVID-19? Will any government see the potential danger of an inadequate designed for spaces and social distancing in the airport shopping maze and come up legislation to force airport make sure there is open and direct walking ways instead of the forced shopping experience? For this matter, I like most airports in the USA, where hardly any airports have this shopping trump convenience mentality. But clearly, in many airports of Europe and Asia, something needs to be changed and fast. What is your opinion on this?


Social distancing, availability of vaccines, or herd immunity will not change the airports' shopping mall designs. What will change the designs is sales, or the lack of sales in the new normal.

The new normal for air travel is predicted to be much less travelers, both business and personal. Also, the new normal also means less discretionary spending. The remaining travelers in the airport will spend a lot less money in the malls when there are job cuts and pay cuts everywhere.

When you combine two negative factors: fewer travelers and less spending, that means less sales. With less sales, airport managers will realize they have too much shopping mall space. A lot of the shops will close down. The closed shops will be repurposed for some other use or become abandoned space.
All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4219
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Mon May 04, 2020 10:31 am

chonetsao wrote:
Obviously now we know, this bottom neck forced feed lane to lure travellers spending money on meaningless duty frees are one of the biggest risks to spread airborne diseases. It slows the traffic flow and force people to rub shoulders and create unnecessary obstacles.


Your premise seems to be that duty free shops with narrow, winding corridors are bad. But not all duty free shops have narrow corridors. Some have plenty of space. To top it out, the flow is in a single direction.

Much as I dislike being forced through a duty free shop after passing security, it is a relative non-issue in terms of spreading diseases. If done in a relatively sensible way, there are bigger risks other places that need to be addressed, not least the high density seating in the airplanes and all the places you queue up. IMO, security checkpoints need to be looked at. Nothing worse than several hundred people standing in line without shoes on, with security staff patting everyone down.
 
AirFiero
Posts: 1546
Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:43 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Mon May 04, 2020 6:30 pm

raylee67 wrote:
AirFiero wrote:

More of what I’ve seen reported is that a lot more people have already been infected and either had very mild symptoms or none at all. I’d bet this will be over WAY sooner than later. The only thing that concerns me is that a more virulent strain will emerge. But if there’s a next time, we will be ready.


Yep agree. Sweden has announced that they expect to have 26% of Stockholm's population to be infected by May 1. And samples of 3000 people from NY state reveals that 20% of NYC samples carry antibodies (i.e. have been infected at some point).

But I am definitely hoarding masks. Even if it's not a mutated strain of this virus, it would be something else. In the last 18 years, we had seen SARS, MERS, H1N1 swine flu and now this. We were just lucky that for whatever reasons, SARS and MERS were not that contagious and Swine Flu is not that deadly. Who knows what the next one will be.


Dr. Birx seemed to confirm this just today...

Deborah Birx: U.S. 'underestimated' asymptomatic spread of coronavirus early on
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/20 ... ic-corona/
 
BNEman
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:28 pm

Re: Will Shopping Malls Becomes A Past In Airport Design?

Tue May 05, 2020 9:32 pm

I think these malls are a benefit to the control of a virus....the overpowering stench of hundreds of different perfumes etc being sampled probably neutralises covid-19. All passengers should be forced to walk through the haze...

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: RyanairGuru and 36 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos