It comes as no surprise that a large concessionaire at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport has announed the closure of some stores and restaurants, as well as a reduction of hours at others due to the coronavirus pandemic. With airline operations drastically reduced for an indefinite period of time including an announced 70 percent cutback in flights by MSP’s largest carrier, Delta Air Lines, OTG Management of New York today anounced it has laid off 156 employees. United, American, Southwest and other carriers have also reduced their schedules at MSP, across the country and around the world. While OTG expressed hope in its announcement that many workers could be re-hired in the future as air travel recovers from the pandemic, without an end date in sight to the virus emergency they are considering these layoffs at this time to be permanent.
An airport spokesman advised that OTG has temporarily closed five restaurants and two retail stores on the G Concourse, and that others that remain open have reduced hours to meet the much lower demand. As of early last week MSP’s passenger counts were down 60-70 percent compared to the same period last year, and a startling 86 percent year-over-year on Saturday, March 21st.