On Saturday, Schiphol came with a request to reduce the number of passengers by 3,500, and on Sunday, the airport aims to reduce the number of passengers by 5,800. “We’re not there yet,” admits Patricia Vitalis, COO of Schiphol. It also indicates that KLM no longer requires cancellations. The airline has already announced that it will cancel 47 flights for Saturday and Sunday.
Vitalis says other airlines that usually carry a lot of people in Schiphol may be able to do so at once at other European airports. Just like on Saturday, some flights will also be transferred to Rotterdam The Hague Airport on Sunday. At the moment, this concerns only two flights, one from Transavia and the other from Corendon.
According to Vitalis, Schiphol is concerned with the safety of passengers and staff at the station. There are so many people that the security they have to go through can’t handle it “unfortunately”. On Sunday, it expects about 70,000 departing passengers to pass through the security gates, or 10,000 more than on Saturday. If we look at all incoming and outgoing passengers, including carried passengers, this relates to the numbers 190,000 and 170,000.
“It was very crowded this morning and there were long queues at the check-in desks,” says Vitalis. “People sometimes had to queue for two hours to get through security.” A quick look at the departure boards revealed that flights were also delayed. Schiphol staff tried to direct passenger flows in the right direction as much as possible. The fire brigade distributed water to the waiting passengers. Saturday was worse than the crowds had passed by the end of the afternoon.
Vitalis acknowledges that the situation is “extremely disturbing for travelers”. But she does not rule out the possibility that Schiphol will ask airlines to cancel flights more often this year. Due to the Corona pandemic, the airport is experiencing a huge shortage of staff. People have lost their jobs during the pandemic due to a lack of flights for nearly two years. Not everyone has returned to their old jobs
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