March 21, 2023

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KLM allows 42 planes to fly to Schiphol without passengers due to congestion

KLM allows 42 planes to fly to Schiphol without passengers due to congestion

It was already busy in Schiphol on Friday, with long lines outside the airport.ANP . image

It is expected to be very busy in Schiphol again on Sunday, but KLM does not expect to have to use this special procedure again. On Saturday evening, 12 flights, including from Ibiza, Athens, Paris and Malaga, could still continue with passengers. But other European flights were made with an empty plane.

KLM’s decision stems from ongoing pressure at Schiphol, which is struggling with staff shortages in security and baggage handling. By not including the transported passengers in particular, these passengers are not stranded in Schiphol. According to a spokesperson for the airline, the measure, which went into effect around 5 p.m., is in effect. “It helps, it calms down in the transfer offices.”

The city’s so-called hoppers will return to Amsterdam empty for the rest of the day, and passengers will not be allowed to board them anymore. The cancellation of about fifty flights per day over the weekend in Whitsun, which KLM decided earlier, did not appear to be enough to rein in the crowds. KLM attributes this to unforeseen circumstances. “Due to unfavorable weather conditions and runway maintenance at Schiphol, many aircraft were unable to land or depart in Amsterdam,” the company said in a press release.

Stranded passengers

By stopping to carry new passengers to Schiphol, KLM hopes to bring as many stranded passengers from Amsterdam to their destination as possible and not have to cancel more flights on Sunday.

KLM says it will offer an alternative flight to passengers affected by this measure as soon as possible. The question is if they can leave tomorrow. “We will look further on Sunday,” a spokeswoman said.

Schiphol agrees that delays and flights have been canceled due to unfavorable wind direction and limited runway capacity. An airport spokeswoman said this had an indirect effect and could lead to disruptions. To reduce crowding at stations, since Friday, only passengers who depart within four hours are allowed.

“Very disturbing”

The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management said on Saturday that it found the situation in Schiphol “extremely worrying”. Schiphol does not currently deliver the quality we expect from an airport. The Cabinet is in constant dialogue with Schiphol. The ministry told the ANP news agency that the cabinet urged the airport in those talks to do everything in its power to solve problems quickly.

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