Schiphol Airport Increases Summer 2024 Capacity Amidst Airlines and Stakeholder Pressures

After finalizing the capacity limit for Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS) for summer 2024, airlines can now rest assured that disruptions to their peak season plans will be minimized. The airport has agreed to increase flights next summer, provided airlines assist in decreasing air traffic during peak hours in the busy season. 


The Dutch government and Schiphol Airport Authority had previously faced criticism and intense pressure from airlines, passenger groups, and other stakeholders after they proposed reducing the airport's overall capacity in 2024, especially during the peak summer travel period. Despite the government's previous plan to reduce flights by 8%, Schiphol announced in November 2023 that it might have to decrease capacity next summer. Specifically, Amsterdam Schiphol plans to offer a total capacity of 293,000 flights for the summer season and approximately 483,000 flights for the entire year. 

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Following the finalization of capacity limits, airlines are anticipated to voluntarily suggest ways to decrease the number of flights during peak times. Patricia Vitalis, Executive Director of Operations at Schiphol, stated that while more flights are now feasible, it is only safe and responsible if we alleviate pressure during certain peak hours. The Dutch government had to abandon its proposal to limit flights to 460,000, primarily due to environmental concerns and increasing pressure from the European Union and the US government. 

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The latter had threatened to limit KLM's access to US airports in response to JetBlue Airways' potential expulsion from Amsterdam due to the cutbacks. The Dutch branch of Air France-KLM expressed satisfaction with Schiphol's announcement in a separate statement, noting that it now has only three months, rather than the usual six, to make the necessary preparations. KLM stated in a statement that stable, predictable operations are crucial for customers and employees, who naturally expect this from us. We now have barely three months to make the necessary preparations instead of the usual six. KLM will undoubtedly do everything possible to operate the number of flights it has been allocated.

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