ORLANDO, FL. – Hours of operations for concessionaires have started to change at Orlando International Airport (MCO) in response to a decrease in passenger traffic as a result of concerns associated with Coronavirus.
“We are in close communication with our concession providers to evaluate the needs of our airport guests and the operational desires of those companies,” said Raymond Anderson, Senior Director of Concessions & Properties for the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “Overall traffic may be down at Orlando International, but thousands of people continue to travel through our world-class facility and we’re working to ensure they have access to quality brands and products while they are here.”
Travelers will see some retail and food locations are closed or have otherwise made modifications to their operating hours. In order to observe guidelines, a number of chairs have been removed to encourage social distancing within our facility.
Below are updates from other areas within the airport:
Overall Air Service
Orlando International Airport is open and operational. Airport leaders continue to work with airline partners in reviewing flight schedules during this fluid situation. Passengers are encouraged to confirm travel itineraries with their individual airlines before arriving at MCO.
A total of 1,053 flights were scheduled for today. There have been 137 cancellations, including 65 arrivals and 72 departures.
An estimated 33,833 passengers were expected to depart from MCO today, down from an original projection of 76,841, based on the Spring Break travel period.
Federal International Travel Restrictions
The U.S. Department of State issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory, which advises U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19. Additionally, action is being taken federally to close the country’s northern and southern borders.
In total, there were 22 international flights planned for today, with an estimated 1,506 arriving passengers.
Orlando International had no regularly scheduled flights to Europe, the United Kingdom or Ireland after an expanded federal travel ban placed restrictions on the entry of those visitors coming to the United States. Similar to efforts earlier this week, Virgin Atlantic obtained approval to operate two more outbound relief flights to assist in getting passengers out of the area.
One flight will depart tonight at 8:05 p.m. and flies to London. Another is scheduled for Saturday, March 21.
Orlando International is not one of the country’s 13 authorized, federally-approved screening airports. U.S. citizens and legal residents returning from one of the restricted international destinations are required to arrive through those airports for additional screening before they are allowed to continue to their final destination.
Rental car companies have consolidated their presence at MCO and are now operating in the A Terminal only. All passengers looking to return or pick up a vehicle will be directed to that area.
As resorts at Walt Disney World close this evening, the Disney Magical Express will also cease operations.
Changes in air service and concessions will have a negative economic impact on Orlando International Airport and other airports around the country. According to the Airports Council International-North America, it is anticipated there will be an economic loss of at least $14 billion for all airports in 2020. That number has more than tripled in the last week, per ACI-NA.